Large-Scale 1T'-Phase Tungsten Disulfide Atomic Layers Grown by Gas-Source Chemical Vapor Deposition

ACS Nano. 2022 Aug 23;16(8):13069-13081. doi: 10.1021/acsnano.2c05699. Epub 2022 Jul 18.


The control of crystal polymorphism and exploration of metastable, two-dimensional, 1T'-phase, transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) have received considerable research attention. 1T'-phase TMDs are expected to offer various opportunities for the study of basic condensed matter physics and for its use in important applications, such as devices with topological states for quantum computing, low-resistance contact for semiconducting TMDs, energy storage devices, and as hydrogen evolution catalysts. However, due to the high energy difference and phase change barrier between 1T' and the more stable 2H-phase, there are few methods that can be used to obtain monolayer 1T'-phase TMDs. Here, we report on the chemical vapor deposition (CVD) growth of 1T'-phase WS2 atomic layers from gaseous precursors, i.e., H2S and WF6, with alkali metal assistance. The gaseous nature of the precursors, reducing properties of H2S, and presence of Na+, which acts as a countercation, provided an optimal environment for the growth of 1T'-phase WS2, resulting in the formation of high-quality submillimeter-sized crystals. The crystal structure was characterized by atomic-resolution scanning transmission electron microscopy, and the zigzag chain structure of W atoms, which is characteristic of the 1T' structure, was clearly observed. Furthermore, the grown 1T'-phase WS2 showed superconductivity with the transition temperature in the 2.8-3.4 K range and large upper critical field anisotropy. Thus, alkali metal assisted gas-source CVD growth is useful for realizing large-scale, high-quality, phase-engineered TMD atomic layers via a bottom-up synthesis.

Keywords: chemical vapor deposition; phase engineering; superconductivity; transition-metal dichalcogenides; two-dimensional materials.