Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors
Heifer International



Home > Press > Ambient light alters refraction in 2D material: Rice researchers find effect that could aid 3D displays, virtual reality, self-driving vehicles

Atoms in the crystal lattice of tantalum disulfide arrange themselves into six-pointed stars that can be manipulated by light, according to Rice University researchers. The phenomenon can be used to control the material’s refractive index. It could become useful for 3D displays, virtual reality and in lidar systems for self-driving vehicles. (Credit: Weijian Li/Rice University)
Atoms in the crystal lattice of tantalum disulfide arrange themselves into six-pointed stars that can be manipulated by light, according to Rice University researchers. The phenomenon can be used to control the material’s refractive index. It could become useful for 3D displays, virtual reality and in lidar systems for self-driving vehicles. (Credit: Weijian Li/Rice University)

Abstract:
Microscopic crystals in tantalum disulfide have a starring role in what could become a hit for 3D displays, virtual reality and even self-driving vehicles.

Ambient light alters refraction in 2D material: Rice researchers find effect that could aid 3D displays, virtual reality, self-driving vehicles

Houston, TX | Posted on September 2nd, 2020

A two-dimensional array of the material has unique optical characteristics that can be controlled in ambient conditions and under general illumination, according to engineer Gururaj Naik and graduate student Weijian Li of Rice’s Brown School of Engineering.

When they pull a two-dimensional sliver off a bulk sample (with that tried-and-true tool, adhesive tape) and shine light on it, the layered material rearranges the charge density waves of electrons that flow through, altering its refractive index. Light emitted along the affected axis changes its color depending on the strength of the light that goes in.

The discovery is detailed in the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters.

“We need an optical material that can change the refractive index for applications like virtual reality, 3D displays, optical computers and lidar, which is necessary for autonomous vehicles,” said Naik, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering. “At the same time, it has to be fast. Only then can we enable these new technologies.”

Tantalum disulfide, a semiconducting, layered compound with a prismatic metal center, appears to fit the bill. The material is already known for harboring charge density waves at room temperature that allow adjustments to its electrical conductivity, but the strength of light input also changes its refractive index, which quantifies the speed at which light travels through. That makes it tunable, Naik said.

When exposed to light, the tantalum layer reorganizes into a lattice of 12-atom stars, like the Star of David or sheriff’s badges, that facilitate charge density waves. How these stars are stacked determines whether the compound is insulating or metallic along its c-axis.

It turns out that also determines its refractive index. Light triggers the stars to realign, changing the charge density waves enough to affect the material’s optical constants.

“This belongs to a class of what we call strongly correlated materials, which means the electrons strongly interact with each other,” Li said. “In this case, we can predict the properties that show a strong response to some external stimulus.”

That the stimulus is as mild as ambient white light is a plus, Naik added. “This is the first material we’ve seen where the interaction of light happens not just with single particles, but with a collection of particles together, at room temperature,” he said. The phenomenon appears to work in tantalum disulfide as thin as 10 nanometers and as thick as a millimeter, he said.

“We think this is an important discovery for those who study strongly correlated materials for applications,” Naik said. “We show light is a very powerful knob to change how correlation extends in this material.”

####

About Rice University
Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,962 undergraduates and 3,027 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is just under 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for quality of life and No. 1 for lots of race/class interaction by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Jeff Falk
713-348-6775


Mike Williams
713-348-6728

Copyright © Rice University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Read the abstract at:

The Naik Lab:

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering:

George R. Brown School of Engineering:

Related News Press

News and information

The National Space Society Congratulates Blue Origin and Jeff Bezos for the Spectacular First Crewed Flight of the New Shepard: Well-Tested Suborbital Tourist Rocket Soars to 63 Miles; Opens New Frontiers July 21st, 2021

Unconventional superconductor acts the part of a promising quantum computing platform: If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck. July 16th, 2021

Unlocking efficient light-energy conversion with stable coordination nanosheets: Scientists design a high-performance, self-powered, UV photodetector using 2D nanosheets that show record photocurrent stability under air exposure July 16th, 2021

The virus trap: Hollow nano-objects made of DNA could trap viruses and render them harmless July 16th, 2021

Primers with graphene nanotubes offer a new solution for electrostatic painting of automotive parts July 16th, 2021

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

Removing the lead hazard from perovskite solar cells July 16th, 2021

Nanotech OLED electrode liberates 20% more light, could slash display power consumption: A five-nanometer-thick layer of silver and copper outperforms conventional indium tin oxide without adding cost June 29th, 2021

Pushing the boundaries of colloidal quantum dots by making their sizes equal: Scientists demonstrate the relationship between optoelectronic performance and size uniformity in perovskite colloidal quantum dots June 25th, 2021

2 Dimensional Materials

Putting functional proteins in their place: Using DNA-based assembly, scientists developed a method for creating designed and biologically active 2-D and 3-D protein arrays, which show promise for applications in structural biology, biomaterials, nanomedicine, and biocatalysis June 25th, 2021

Atomic-scale tailoring of graphene approaches macroscopic world June 18th, 2021

Changing a 2D material's symmetry can unlock its promise: Jian Shi Research Group engineers material into promising optoelectronic June 18th, 2021

Virtual Reality

CEA-Leti Combines Integrated Optics and Holography In Novel Lens-Free, Augmented Reality Technology: Approach Eliminates the Need for Optical Systems and Combiners in AR; Will Be Presented at SPIE Photonics West 2019 February 6th, 2019

Possible Futures

The National Space Society Congratulates Blue Origin and Jeff Bezos for the Spectacular First Crewed Flight of the New Shepard: Well-Tested Suborbital Tourist Rocket Soars to 63 Miles; Opens New Frontiers July 21st, 2021

Scientists create rechargeable swimming microrobots using oil and water July 16th, 2021

Scientists take first snapshots of ultrafast switching in a quantum electronic device: They discover a short-lived state that could lead to faster and more energy-efficient computing devices July 16th, 2021

Researchers discover a new inorganic material with lowest thermal conductivity ever reported July 16th, 2021

Optical computing/Photonic computing

Unlocking efficient light-energy conversion with stable coordination nanosheets: Scientists design a high-performance, self-powered, UV photodetector using 2D nanosheets that show record photocurrent stability under air exposure July 16th, 2021

Researchers tame silicon to interact with light for next-generation microelectronics June 11th, 2021

Luminaries: Steven DenBaars and John Bowers receive top recognition at Compound Semiconductor Week conference May 21st, 2021

Emergence of a new heteronanostructure library May 14th, 2021

Discoveries

Repairs using light signals: FAU research group develops smart microparticle that identifies defective parts in electrical appliances July 16th, 2021

Removing the lead hazard from perovskite solar cells July 16th, 2021

Scientists create rechargeable swimming microrobots using oil and water July 16th, 2021

Scientists take first snapshots of ultrafast switching in a quantum electronic device: They discover a short-lived state that could lead to faster and more energy-efficient computing devices July 16th, 2021

Announcements

The National Space Society Congratulates Blue Origin and Jeff Bezos for the Spectacular First Crewed Flight of the New Shepard: Well-Tested Suborbital Tourist Rocket Soars to 63 Miles; Opens New Frontiers July 21st, 2021

Scientists create rechargeable swimming microrobots using oil and water July 16th, 2021

Scientists take first snapshots of ultrafast switching in a quantum electronic device: They discover a short-lived state that could lead to faster and more energy-efficient computing devices July 16th, 2021

Researchers discover a new inorganic material with lowest thermal conductivity ever reported July 16th, 2021

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers/Posters

RUDN University chemists obtained an unusual planar nickel complex exhibiting magnetic properties July 16th, 2021

Repairs using light signals: FAU research group develops smart microparticle that identifies defective parts in electrical appliances July 16th, 2021

Scientists create rechargeable swimming microrobots using oil and water July 16th, 2021

Scientists take first snapshots of ultrafast switching in a quantum electronic device: They discover a short-lived state that could lead to faster and more energy-efficient computing devices July 16th, 2021

Automotive/Transportation

Primers with graphene nanotubes offer a new solution for electrostatic painting of automotive parts July 16th, 2021

Proliferation of electric vehicles based on high-performance, low-cost sodium-ion battery:A large-capacity anode material is developed for sodium-ion batteries by using low-cost silicone-based oil. This process, if commercialized, is expected to significantly reduce manufacturing June 18th, 2021

Active platinum species: Catalytic high-temperature oxidations: Individual atom or metal cluster? June 16th, 2021

CEA-Leti Introduces Plastic mmWave System for Applications Requiring Ultra-Low Latency and Ultra-High-Speed Connectivity: Low-Cost Gb/s Connectivity Overcomes Limits of Copper Wire and Optical Fiber For Automotive, Aeronautics, Telecom, Industry 4.0 and Healthcare Uses May 28th, 2021

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project