Large phosphorene in-plane contraction induced by interlayer interactions in graphene-phosphorene heterostructures

Benoit Van Troeye, Aurélien Lherbier, Jean Christophe Charlier, Xavier Gonze

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Intralayer deformation in van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures is generally assumed to be negligible due to the weak nature of the interactions between the layers, especially when the interfaces are found incoherent. In the present work, graphene-phosphorene vdW heterostructures are investigated with the density functional theory (DFT). The challenge of treating a nearly incommensurate (very large) supercell in DFT is bypassed by considering different energetic quantities in the grand canonical ensemble, alternative to the formation energy, in order to take into account the mismatch elastic contribution of the different layers. In the investigated heterostructures, it is found that phosphorene contracts by ∼4% in the armchair direction when compared to its free-standing form. This large contraction leads to important changes in terms of electronic properties, with the direct electronic optical transition of phosphorene becoming indirect in specific vdW heterostructures. More generally, such a contraction indicates strong substrate effects in supported or encapsulated phosphorene - neglected hitherto - and paves the way to substrate-controlled stresstronic in such 2D crystal. In addition, the stability of these vdW heterostructures is investigated as a function of the rotation angle between the layers and as a function of the stacking composition. The alignment of the specific crystalline directions of graphene and phosphorene is found energetically favored. In parallel, several models based on DFT-estimated quantities are presented; they allow notably a better understanding of the global mutual accommodation of 2D materials in their corresponding interfaces, that is predicted to be non-negligible even in the case of incommensurate interfaces.

Original languageEnglish
Article number074001
JournalPhysical Review Materials
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2018
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Large phosphorene in-plane contraction induced by interlayer interactions in graphene-phosphorene heterostructures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this