Investigation of photon emitters in Ce-implanted hexagonal boron nitride

Gabriel I. López-Morales, L. I. Mingxing, Alexander Hampel, Sitakanta Satapathy, Nicholas V. Proscia, Harishankar Jayakumar, Artur Lozovoi, Daniela Pagliero, Gustavo E. Lopez, Vinod M. Menon, Johannes Flick, Carlos A. Meriles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Color centers in hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) are presently attracting broad interest as a novel platform for nanoscale sensing and quantum information processing. Unfortunately, their atomic structures remain largely elusive and only a small percentage of the emitters studied thus far have the properties required to serve as optically addressable spin qubits. Here, we use confocal fluorescence microscopy at variable temperatures to study a new class of point defects produced via cerium ion implantation in thin hBN flakes. We find that, to a significant fraction, emitters show bright room-temperature emission, and good optical stability suggesting the formation of Ce-based point defects. Using density functional theory (DFT) we calculate the emission properties of candidate emitters, and single out the CeVB center—formed by an interlayer Ce atom adjacent to a boron vacancy—as one possible microscopic model. Our results suggest an intriguing route to defect engineering that simultaneously exploits the singular properties of rare-earth ions and the versatility of two-dimensional material hosts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3478-3485
Number of pages8
JournalOptical Materials Express
Volume11
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 17 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgements. G.I.L.M. and N.V.P. acknowledge financial support from CREST IDEALS supported through grant NSF-1547830. V.M.M. and C.A.M. acknowledge support from the National Science Foundation through grant NSF-1906096. C.A.M. acknowledges support from Research Corporation through a FRED award. The Flatiron Institute is a division of the Simons Foundation.

Funding Information:
G.I.L.M. and N.V.P. acknowledge financial support from CREST IDEALS supported through grant NSF-1547830. V.M.M. and C.A.M. acknowledge support from the National Science Foundation through grant NSF-1906096. C.A.M. acknowledges support from Research Corporation through a FRED award. The Flatiron Institute is a division of the Simons Foundation.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Optical Society of America

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