Environment-controlled dislocation migration and superplasticity in monolayer MoS<inf>2</inf>

  • Zou X
  • Liu M
  • Shi Z
 et al. 
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The two-dimensional (2D) transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDC, of generic formula MX2) monolayer displays the "triple-decker" structure with the chemical bond organization much more complex than in well-studied monatomic layers of graphene or boron nitride. Accordingly, the makeup of the dislocations in TMDC permits chemical variability, depending sensitively on the equilibrium with the environment. In particular, first-principles calculations show that dislocations state can be switched to highly mobile, profoundly changing the lattice relaxation and leading to superplastic behavior. With 2D MoS2 as an example, we construct full map for dislocation dynamics, at different chemical potentials, for both the M- and X-oriented dislocations. Depending on the structure of the migrating dislocation, two different dynamic mechanisms are revealed: either the direct rebonding (RB) mechanism where only a single metal atom shifts slightly, or generalized Stone-Wales (SW(g)) rotation in which several atoms undergo significant displacements. The migration barriers for RB mechanism can be 2-4 times lower than for the SW(g). Our analyses show that within a range of chemical potentials, highly mobile dislocations could at the same time be thermodynamically favored, that is statistically dominating the overall material property. This demonstrates remarkable possibility of changing material basic property such as plasticity by changing elemental chemical potentials of the environment.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Two-dimensional
  • chemical potential
  • dislocation dynamics
  • first-principles theory
  • transition-metal dichalcogenides

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  • Xiaolong Zou

  • Mingjie Liu

  • Zhiming Shi

  • Boris I. Yakobson

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