Atomic and electronic reconstruction at van der Waals interface in twisted bilayer graphene

Hyobin Yoo, Rebecca Engelke, Stephen Carr, Shiang Fang, Kuan Zhang, Paul Cazeaux, Suk Hyun Sung, Robert Hovden, Adam W. Tsen, Takashi Taniguchi, Kenji Watanabe, Gyu Chul Yi, Miyoung Kim, Mitchell Luskin, Ellad B. Tadmor, Efthimios Kaxiras, Philip Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Control of the interlayer twist angle in two-dimensional (2D) van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures enables one to engineer a quasiperiodic moiré superlattice of tunable length scale1-7. In twisted bilayer graphene (TBG), the simple moiré superlattice band description suggests that the electronic band width can be tuned to be comparable to the vdW interlayer interaction at a ‘magic angle’8, exhibiting strongly correlated behavior. However, the vdW interlayer interaction can also cause significant structural reconstruction at the interface by favoring interlayer commensurability, which competes with the intralayer lattice distortion9-15. Here we report the atomic scale reconstruction in TBG and its effect on the electronic structure. We find a gradual transition from incommensurate moiré structure to an array of commensurate domain structures as we decrease the twist angle across the characteristic crossover angle, θc ~1°. In the twist regime smaller than θc where the atomic and electronic reconstruction become significant, a simple moiré band description breaks down. Upon applying a transverse electric field, we observe electronic transport along the network of one-dimensional (1D) topological channels that surround the alternating triangular gapped domains, providing a new pathway to engineer the system with continuous tunability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalUnknown Journal
StatePublished - Apr 11 2018

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