Coupled Spin and Valley Physics in Monolayers of MoS2 and Other group-VI Dichalcogenides

Phys Rev Lett. 2012 May 11;108(19):196802. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.108.196802. Epub 2012 May 7.


We show that inversion symmetry breaking together with spin-orbit coupling leads to coupled spin and valley physics in monolayers of MoS2 and other group-VI dichalcogenides, making possible controls of spin and valley in these 2D materials. The spin-valley coupling at the valence-band edges suppresses spin and valley relaxation, as flip of each index alone is forbidden by the valley-contrasting spin splitting. Valley Hall and spin Hall effects coexist in both electron-doped and hole-doped systems. Optical interband transitions have frequency-dependent polarization selection rules which allow selective photoexcitation of carriers with various combination of valley and spin indices. Photoinduced spin Hall and valley Hall effects can generate long lived spin and valley accumulations on sample boundaries. The physics discussed here provides a route towards the integration of valleytronics and spintronics in multivalley materials with strong spin-orbit coupling and inversion symmetry breaking.