January 28, 2023

A fast light detector made of two-dimensional materials

Researchers at ETH Zurich have joined forces to develop a novel light detector which consists of two-dimensional layers of different materials that are coupled to a silicon optical waveguide.

This extremely fast and sensitive light detector is based on the interplay between novel two-dimensional materials and nano-photonic optical waveguides.

The researchers had to find a way to make the ordinarily rather slow TMDC-based (transition metals) detectors faster. On the other hand, the detector had to be optimally coupled to the silicon structures used as an interface without sacrificing its high-speed performance.

They solved the speed problem by realizing a vertical heterostructure made of molybdenum ditelluride and graphene.

Their results were recently published in the scientific journal Nature Nanotechnology.

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