New Assembly-Free Bulk Layered Inorganic Vertical Heterostructures with Infrared and Optical Bandgaps
2019; 19 (1): 142–49
In principle, a nearly endless number of unique van der Waals heterostructures can be created through the vertical stacking of two-dimensional (2D) materials, resulting in unprecedented potential for material design. However, this widely employed synthetic method for generating van der Waals heterostructures is slow, imprecise, and prone to introducing interlayer contaminants when compared with synthesis methods that are scalable to industrially relevant scales. Herein, we study the properties of a new class of layered bulk inorganic materials that has recently been reported, which we call assembly-free bulk layered inorganic heterostructures, wherein the individual layers are of dissimilar chemical composition, distinguishing them from commonly studied layered materials. We find that these bulk materials exhibit properties similar to vertical heterostructures, but without the complex and unscalable stacking process. Using state-of-the-art computational approaches, we study the electronic properties of livingstonite (HgSb4S8), a naturally occurring mineral that is a bulk lattice-commensurate heterostructure. We find that isolated bilayers of livingstonite have an intralayer HSE-06 band gap of 2.08eV. This is the first report of a naturally occurring van der Waals heterostructure with a calculated band gap in the visible spectrum. We also studied the electronic properties of tetragonal Ti3Bi4O12, Sm2Ti3Bi2O12, orthorhombic Ti3Bi4O12, Nb3Bi5O15, LaTiNbBi2O9 and AgPbBrO and found some of them are potentially well suited for photovoltaic applications. We also provide characterization of the electronic structure of the isolated bilayer and monolayer subcomponents of the bulk heterostructures. The report of the properties of these materials significantly enhances the library of known van der Waals heterostructures.
View details for DOI 10.1021/acs.nanolett.8b03500
View details for Web of Science ID 000455561300017
View details for PubMedID 30525679
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