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A dielectric-defined lateral heterojunction in a monolayer semiconductor


Owing to their low dimensionality, two-dimensional semiconductors, such as monolayer molybdenum disulfide, have a range of properties that make them valuable in the development of nanoelectronics. For example, the electronic bandgap of these semiconductors is not an intrinsic physical parameter and can be engineered by manipulating the dielectric environment around the monolayer. Here we show that this dielectric-dependent electronic bandgap can be used to engineer a lateral heterojunction within a homogeneous MoS 2 monolayer. We visualize the heterostructure with Kelvin probe force microscopy and examine its influence on electrical transport experimentally and theoretically. We observe a lateral heterojunction with an approximately 90 meV band offset due to the differing degrees of bandgap renormalization of monolayer MoS 2 when it is placed on a substrate in which one segment is made from an amorphous fluoropolymer (Cytop) and another segment is made of hexagonal boron nitride. This heterostructure leads to a diode-like electrical transport with a strong asymmetric behaviour.

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