Research Overview

The unique structure and properties of two-dimensional (2D) materials have a large impact on fundamental researches as well as applications covering electronics, photonics, optoelectronics and energy science. The Peng research group is interested in nanomaterials science and engineering towards the better performance of nanoelectronics, quantum devices, photodetectors, and batteries. Currently, our research interests are focused on the controlled growth, chemical modifications, heterostructures and functional devices of high-mobility 2D materials, such as graphene, topological insulator, layered chalcogenides and oxychalcogenides.

2D materials “beyond graphene”

High-mobility semiconducting 2D oxychalcogenides (BOX)

In semiconductor physics and related devices, it is pivotal to identify new 2D materials with both high carrier mobility and large electronic bandgap, which hold great promises in pushing the ultrathin limitation where the traditional semiconductors (e.g. Si and GaAs) fall short. However, air-stable ultrathin semiconducting materials with superior performances remain elusive up to date. Very recently, the Peng research group realized the controlled syntheses of high-mobility semiconducting 2D crystals--- layered bismuth oxychalcogenides (BOX, Bi2O2X: X = S, Se, Te), and are vigorously exploring their vistas in electronics and optoelectronics. The Peng research group is interested in chemical vapor deposition (CVD) and epitaxial growth of large-area layered Bi2O2Se single crystals with the thickness down to monolayer, which exhibit excellent air-stability, low electron effective mass of ~0.14 m0, and tunable bandgap values of ~ 0.8 eV. 2D BOX crystals can be fabricated into high-performance field-effect transistors and near-infrared (NIR) photodetectors, where pronounced quantum oscillations were also observed.

Representative publications:
  • Tianran Li#, Teng Tu#, Yuanwei Sun, Huixia Fu, Jia Yu, Lei Xing, Ziang Wang, Huimin Wang, Rundong Jia, Jinxiong Wu, Congwei Tan, Yan Liang, Yichi Zhang, Congcong Zhang, Yumin Dai, Chenguang Qiu, Ming Li, Ru Huang, Liying Jiao, Keji Lai, Binghai Yan, Peng Gao, Hailin Peng*. A native oxide high-κ gate dielectric for two-dimensional electronics. Nature Electronics 2020, in press. (#equally contributed) 

  • Jinxiong Wu#, Hongtao Yuan#, Mengmeng Meng, Cheng Chen, Yan Sun, Zhuoyu Chen, Wenhui Dang, Congwei Tan, Yujing Liu, Jianbo Yin, Yubing Zhou, Shaoyun Huang, H. Q. Xu, Yi Cui, Harold Y. Hwang, Zhongfan Liu, Yulin Chen, Binghai Yan, Hailin Peng*. High electron mobility and quantum oscillations in non-encapsulated ultrathin semiconducting Bi2O2Se. Nature Nanotechnology 2017, 12, 530 (#equally contributed).

  • Jinxiong Wu#, Congwei Tan#, Zhenjun Tan, Yujing Liu, Jianbo Yin, Wenhui Dang, Mingzhan Wang, Hailin Peng*. Controlled Synthesis of High-Mobility Atomically Thin Bismuth Oxyselenide Crystals. Nano Letters 2017, 17, 3021 (#equally contributed).

  • Jinxiong Wu#, Yujing Liu#, Zhenjun Tan#, Congwei Tan, Jianbo Yin, Tianran Li, Teng Tu, and Hailin Peng*. Chemical Patterning of High-mobility Semiconducting 2D Bi2O2Se Crystals for Integrated Optoelectronic Devices. Advanced Materials 2017, 29, 1704060 (#equally contributed).

  • Cheng Chen#, Meixiao Wang#, Jinxiong Wu#, Huixia Fu, Haifeng Yang, Zhen Tian, Teng Tu, Han Peng, Yan Sun, Xiang Xu, Juan Jiang, Niels B.M. Schröter, Yiwei Li, Ding Pei, Shuai Liu, Sandy A. Ekahana, Hongtao Yuan, Jiamin Xue, Gang Li, Jinfeng Jia, Zhongkai Liu, Binghai Yan, Hailin Peng*, Yulin Chen*. Electronic Structures and Unusually Robust Bandgap in an Ultrahigh Mobility Layered Oxide Semiconductor, Bi2O2Se. Science Advances 2018, in press (#equally contributed).

  • Jianbo Yin#, Mr. Zhenjun Tan#, Hao Hong#, Jinxiong Wu#, Hongtao Yuan, Yujing Liu, Cheng Chen, Mr. Congwei Tan, Ms. Fengrui Yao, Mr. Tianran Li, Yulin Chen, Zhongfan Liu, Kaihui Liu*, Hailin Peng*. Ultrafast, highly-sensitive infrared photodetectors based on two-dimensional oxyselenide crystals. Nature Communications2018, in press (#equally contributed).

Topological insulator nanostructures

The studies of Dirac materials with Dirac-cone type surface states have come to the fore recently after the legendary isolation of graphene and the discovery of topological insulators. Nanostructured topological insulators, such as 2D nanoplates and ultrathin films with extremely large surface-to-volume ratio, exotic edge/surface states and unique physicochemical properties, have broad and deep implications in fundamental researches as well as applications in electronics, spintronics, photonics, and energy science. To achieve the batch production, fabrication and integration of topological insulator nanostructures into functional electronic and optoelectronic devices, it is particularly important to synthesize high-quality single crystals in a controlled and large-scale manner. Besides, it remains challenging to accurately control their crystallization, thickness, position, orientation and layout. In addition, the high-performance optoelectronic device applications of 2D materials are also highly desired and imperative. The Peng research group has made seminal contributions to controlled growth and device applications of topological insulator nanostructures, including the first discovery of AB quantum interference of surface states in topological insulator nanoribbons and the first demonstration of transparent flexible electrodes based on topological insulator nanostructures.

Representative publications:
  • Hailin Peng*, Wenhui Dang, Jie Cao, Yulin Chen, Di Wu, Wenshan Zheng, Hui Li, Zhi-Xun Shen, Zhongfan Liu. Topological insulator nanostructures for near-infrared transparent flexible electrodes. Nature Chemistry 2012, 4, 281–286.

  • Wenshan Zheng#, Tian Xie#, Yu Zhou#, Y. L. Chen, Wei Jiang, Shuli Zhao, Jinxiong Wu, Yumei Jing, Yue Wu, Guanchu Chen, Yunfan Guo, Jianbo Yin, Shaoyun Huang, H. Q. Xu, Zhongfan Liu, Hailin Peng*. Patterning two-dimensional chalcogenide crystals of Bi2Se3 and In2Se3 and efficient photodetectors. Nature Communications2015, 6, 6972 (#equally contributed).

  • Hailin Peng#, Keji Lai#, Desheng Kong, Stefan Meister, Yulin Chen, Xiao-Liang Qi, Shou-Cheng Zhang, Zhi-Xun Shen, Yi Cui*. Aharonov-Bohm Interference in Topological Insulator Nanoribbons. Nature Materials 2010, 9(3), 225-229 (#equally contributed).

  • Yunfan Guo, Jinyuan Zhou, Yujing Liu, Xu Zhou, Fengrui Yao, Congwei Tan, Jinxiong Wu, Li Lin, Kaihui Liu, Zhongfan Liu, and Hailin Peng*. Chemical Intercalation of Topological Insulator Grid Nanostructures for High-Performance Transparent Electrode. Advanced Materials 2017, 29, 1703424.

  • Yunfan Guo, Li Lin, Shuli Zhao, Bing Deng, Hongliang Chen, Bangjun Ma, Jinxiong Wu, Jianbo Yin, Zhongfan Liu*, Hailin Peng*. 2D Hybrid Nanostructured Dirac Materials for Broadband Transparent Electrodes. Advanced Materials 2015, 27, 4315.

  • Yunfan Guo, Mahaya • Aisijiang, Kai Zhang, Wei Jiang, Yulin Chen, Wenshan Zheng, Zehao Song, Jie Cao, Zhongfan Liu*, Hailin Peng*. Selective-area van der Waals epitaxy of topological insulator grid nanostructures for broadband transparent flexible electrodes. Advanced Materials 2013, 25, 5959.

  • Yunfan Guo, Zhongfan Liu*, Hailin Peng*. A Roadmap for Controlled Production of Topological Insulator Nanostructures and Thin films. Small 2015, 11, 3290. (Invited Review)

  • Hui Li, Jie Cao, Wenshan Zheng, Yulin Chen, Di Wu, Wenhui Dang, Kai Wang, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Controlled synthesis of topological insulator nanoplate arrays on mica. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 6132.

  • Wenhui Dang#, Hailin Peng#, Hui Li, Pu Wang, Zhongfan Liu*. Epitaxial Heterostructures of Ultrathin Topological Insulator Nanoplate and Graphene. Nano Lett. 2010, 10, 2870–2876 (#equally contributed).

Synthesis and device applications of graphene

5-Super(5S) Graphene

Beyond the exciting headways achieved in the basic science of graphene, its controlled synthesis is still the key for a better future of the emerging graphene industry. The Peng research group is interested in the controlled growth, mass production, clean transfer and membrane fabrications of high-quality graphene and its device applications.



Research projects are active in the following areas:


  • Ultrafast growth of single-crystal graphene. We have several innovative contributions to the ultrafast growth of large-area graphene single crystals in a controlled manner and achieved its growth rate with world record (Nature Nanotech. 2016; Adv. Mater. 2017; ACS Nano 2016). Wrinkle-free single-crystal graphene was successfully grown on a wafer-scale twin-boundary-free single-crystal Cu(111)/sapphire substrate through interfacial strain engineering (ACS Nano 2017; Small 2018).

  • Super-clean graphene film. Surface contamination may seriously degrade its intrinsic properties and strongly hindering the applications of graphene in surface and interfacial regions, given that graphene is a 2D monolayer material with an extremely large surface area. We elucidate the origin of surface contaminations of CVD graphene and outline several possible paths towards the large-scale production of super-clean graphene with properties approaching to its ideal case.

  • Mass production of graphene film. Great efforts have been made to control the CVD growth of graphene to achieve large domain sizes, uniform layers, fast growth, and low synthesis temperatures. Some attempts have been made by both the scientific communities and startup companies to mass produce graphene films; however, there is a large difference in the quality of graphene synthesized on a laboratory scale and industrial scale. We have achieved the mass production of graphene film via continuous roll-to-roll chemical vapor deposition and non-destructive lamination transfer process (Nano Lett. 2015; Adv. Mater. 2015; Adv. Mater. 2018).

  • Photochemical modification of graphene. We have pioneered the photochemical modifications and related band structure engineering of graphene, and realized the first Janus graphene based on asymmetric 2D chemistry (Nature Commun. 2013; ACS Nano 2011, Small 2013; JACS 2014).

  • Mosaic graphene p–n junctions. We have proposed the modulation-doped growth of single-crystalline mosaic graphene p–n junctions for efficient photocurrent generation within the photothermoelectric scheme (Nature Commun. 2012; Small 2014; PRL 2014; Nano Lett. 2016)

  • Twisted bilayer graphene. We have demonstrated that twisted bilayer graphene (tBLG) with twist-angle dependent van Hove singularities exhibits strong and peculiar light-matter interactions and selectively enhanced photocurrent generation (Nature Commun. 2016; ACS Nano 2016; Nano Lett. 2015).

  • Graphene-based van der Waals heterostructures. We have fabricated graphene-based vertically stacked van der Waals heterostructure for novel optoelectronic devices (JACS 2016, Adv. Mater. 2018).

  • Ultraclean graphene membranes and TEM grids. We have achieved clean transfer and batch-fabrication of free-standing graphene membranes and thus fabricated TEM grids towards their killer applications (Adv. Mater. 2017).

  • Graphene-armored Al foil current collector. We have synthesized graphene-armored Al foil as current collector in lithium ion batteries, which could simultaneously address the interfacial properties of conventional Al foil current collector (Adv. Mater. 2017).

  • Graphene-based energy conversion. We have synthesized 3D graphene foam with unique structure, which shows excellent solar-to-thermal conversion efficiency (Adv. Mater. 2017). Furthermore, we have proposed series of reliable methods of engineering the SiO-based anode in lithium-ion batteries (Nano Lett. 2017).


Representative publications:
  • Xiaozhi Xu, Zhihong Zhang, Lu Qiu, Jianing Zhuang, Liang Zhang, Huan Wang, Chongnan Liao, Huading Song, Ruixi Qiao, Peng Gao, Zonghai Hu, Lei Liao, Zhimin Liao, Enge Wang, Dapeng Yu, Feng Ding*, Hailin Peng*, Kaihui Liu*. Ultrafast Growth of Large Single-crystal Graphene Assisted by Continuous Oxygen Supply. Nature Nanotechnology 2016, 11, 930.

  • Jianbo Yin#, Huan Wang#, Han Peng#, Zhenjun Tan, Lei Liao, Li Lin, Xiao Sun, Ai Leen Koh, Yulin Chen*, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Selectively enhanced photocurrent generation in twisted bilayer graphene with van Hove singularity. Nature Communications 2016, 7, 10699 (#equally contributed).

  • Chaohua Zhang, Shuli Zhao, Chuanhong Jin, Ai Leen Koh, Yu Zhou, Weigao Xu, Qiucheng Li, Qihua Xiong, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Direct growth of large-area graphene and boron nitride heterostructures by a co-segregation method. Nature Communications 2015, 6, 6519.

  • Liming Zhang, Jingwen Yu, Mingmei Yang, Qin Xie, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Janus Graphene from Asymmetric Two-Dimensional Chemistry. Nature Communications 2013, 4, 1443.

  • Kai Yan, Di Wu, Hailin Peng*, Li Jin, Qiang Fu, Xinhe Bao, Zhongfan Liu*. Modulation-Doped Growth of Mosaic Graphene with Single-Crystalline p-n Junctions for Efficient Photocurrent Generation. Nature Communications 2012, 3, 1280

  • Huan Wang, Xiaozhi Xu, Jiayu Li, Li Lin, Luzhao Sun, Xiao Sun, Shuli Zhao, Congwei Tan, Cheng Chen, Wenhui Dang, Huaying Ren, Jincan Zhang, Bing Deng, Ai Leen Koh, Lei Liao, Ning Kang, Yulin Chen, Hongqi Xu, Feng Ding, Kaihui Liu, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Surface monocrystallization of copper foil for fast growth of large single-crystal graphene under molecular flow. Advanced Materials 2016, 28, 8968.

  • Zhenjun Tan#, Yue Wu#, Hao Hong, Jianbo Yin, Jincan Zhang, Li Lin, Mingzhan Wang, Xiao Sun, Luzhao Sun, Yucheng Huang, Kaihui Liu, Zhongfan Liu*, Hailin Peng*. Two-Dimensional (C4H9NH3)2PbBr4 Perovskite Crystals for High-Performance Photodetector. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 16612

  • Jincan Zhang, Li Lin, Luzhao Sun, Yucheng Huang, Ai Leen Koh, Wenhui Dang, Jianbo Yin, Mingzhan Wang, Congwei Tan, Tianran Li, Zhenjun Tan, Zhongfan Liu*, and Hailin Peng*. Clean Transfer of Large Graphene Single Crystals for High-intactness Suspended Membranes and Liquid Cells. Advanced Materials 2017, 29, 1700639.

  • Mingzhan Wang, Miao Tang, Shulin Chen, Haina Ci, Kexin Wang, Liurong Shi, Li Lin, Huaying Ren, Jingyuan Shan, Peng Gao, Zhongfan Liu*, Hailin Peng*. Graphene-armored Aluminum Foil with Enhanced Anticorrosion Performance as Current Collectors for Lithium-ion Battery. Advanced Materials 2017, 29, 1703882.

  • Huaying Ren, Miao Tang, Baolu Guan, Kexin Wang, Jiawei Yang, Feifan Wang, Mingzhan Wang, Jingyuan Shan, Zhaolong Chen, Di Wei, Hailin Peng*, and Zhongfan Liu*. Hierarchical Graphene Foam for Efficient Omnidirectional Solar–Thermal Energy Conversion. Advanced Materials 2017, 29, 1702590.

  • Liurong Shi, Chunlei Pang, Shulin Chen, Mingzhan Wang, Kexin Wang, Zhenjun Tan, Peng Gao, Jianguo Ren, Youyuan Huang, Hailin Peng*, Zhongfan Liu*. Vertical Graphene Growth on SiO Microparticles for Stable Lithium Ion Battery Anodes. Nano Letters 2017, 17(6), 3681.