Staff directory Sebin Varghese



  • Unraveling Heat Transport and Dissipation in Suspended MoSe2 from Bulk to Monolayer

    Saleta Reig D., Varghese S., Farris R., Block A., Mehew J.D., Hellman O., Woźniak P., Sledzinska M., El Sachat A., Chávez-Ángel E., Valenzuela S.O., van Hulst N.F., Ordejón P., Zanolli Z., Sotomayor Torres C.M., Verstraete M.J., Tielrooij K.-J. Advanced Materials; 34 (10, 2108352) 2022. 10.1002/adma.202108352. IF: 30.849

    Understanding heat flow in layered transition metal dichalcogenide (TMD) crystals is crucial for applications exploiting these materials. Despite significant efforts, several basic thermal transport properties of TMDs are currently not well understood, in particular how transport is affected by material thickness and the material's environment. This combined experimental–theoretical study establishes a unifying physical picture of the intrinsic lattice thermal conductivity of the representative TMD MoSe2. Thermal conductivity measurements using Raman thermometry on a large set of clean, crystalline, suspended crystals with systematically varied thickness are combined with ab initio simulations with phonons at finite temperature. The results show that phonon dispersions and lifetimes change strongly with thickness, yet the thinnest TMD films exhibit an in-plane thermal conductivity that is only marginally smaller than that of bulk crystals. This is the result of compensating phonon contributions, in particular heat-carrying modes around ≈0.1 THz in (sub)nanometer thin films, with a surprisingly long mean free path of several micrometers. This behavior arises directly from the layered nature of the material. Furthermore, out-of-plane heat dissipation to air molecules is remarkably efficient, in particular for the thinnest crystals, increasing the apparent thermal conductivity of monolayer MoSe2 by an order of magnitude. These results are crucial for the design of (flexible) TMD-based (opto-)electronic applications. © 2022 The Authors. Advanced Materials published by Wiley-VCH GmbH


  • Fabrication and characterization of large-area suspended MoSe2 crystals down to the monolayer

    Varghese S., Reig D.S., Mehew J.D., Block A., El Sachat A., Chávez-Ángel E., Sledzinska M., Ballesteros B., Sotomayor Torres C.M., Tielrooij K.-J. JPhys Materials; 4 (4, 046001) 2021. 10.1088/2515-7639/ac2060. IF: 0.000

    Many layered materials, such as graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides, can be exfoliated down to atomic or molecular monolayers. These materials exhibit exciting material properties that can be exploited for several promising device concepts. Thinner materials lead to an increased surface-to-volume ratio, with mono- and bi-layers being basically pure surfaces. Thin crystals containing more than two layers also often behave as an all-surface material, depending on the physical property of interest. As a result, flakes of layered materials are typically highly sensitive to their environment, which is undesirable for a broad range of studies and potential devices. Material systems based on suspended flakes overcome this issue, yet often require complex fabrication procedures. Here, we demonstrate the relatively straightforward fabrication of exfoliated MoSe2 flakes down to the monolayer, suspended over unprecedentedly large holes with a diameter of 15 µm. We describe our fabrication methods in detail, present characterization measurements of the fabricated structures, and, finally, exploit these suspended flakes for accurate optical absorption measurements. © 2021 The Author(s).

  • Thickness-Dependent Elastic Softening of Few-Layer Free-Standing MoSe2

    Babacic V., Saleta Reig D., Varghese S., Vasileiadis T., Coy E., Tielrooij K.-J., Graczykowski B. Advanced Materials; 33 (23, 2008614) 2021. 10.1002/adma.202008614. IF: 30.849

    Few-layer van der Waals (vdW) materials have been extensively investigated in terms of their exceptional electronic, optoelectronic, optical, and thermal properties. Simultaneously, a complete evaluation of their mechanical properties remains an undeniable challenge due to the small lateral sizes of samples and the limitations of experimental tools. In particular, there is no systematic experimental study providing unambiguous evidence on whether the reduction of vdW thickness down to few layers results in elastic softening or stiffening with respect to the bulk. In this work, micro-Brillouin light scattering is employed to investigate the anisotropic elastic properties of single-crystal free-standing 2H-MoSe2 as a function of thickness, down to three molecular layers. The so-called elastic size effect, that is, significant and systematic elastic softening of the material with decreasing numbers of layers is reported. In addition, this approach allows for a complete mechanical examination of few-layer membranes, that is, their elasticity, residual stress, and thickness, which can be easily extended to other vdW materials. The presented results shed new light on the ongoing debate on the elastic size-effect and are relevant for performance and durability of implementation of vdW materials as resonators, optoelectronic, and thermoelectric devices. © 2021 Wiley-VCH GmbH