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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Oct 31;101(18):186401. Epub 2008 Oct 28.

Magnetic edge-state excitons in zigzag graphene nanoribbons.

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Department of Physics, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


We present first-principles calculations of the optical properties of zigzag-edged graphene nanoribbons (ZGNRs) employing the GW-Bethe-Salpeter equation approach with the spin interaction included. Optical response of the ZGNRs is found to be dominated by magnetic edge-state-derived excitons with large binding energy. The absorption spectrum is composed of a characteristic series of exciton states, providing a possible signature for identifying the ZGNRs. The edge-state excitons are charge-transfer excitations with the excited electron and hole located on opposite edges; they moreover induce a spin transfer across the ribbon, resulting in a photoreduction of the magnetic ordering. These novel characteristics are potentially useful in the applications.

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