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Nat Commun. 2016 Nov 15;7:13352. doi: 10.1038/ncomms13352.

Two-dimensional antimonene single crystals grown by van der Waals epitaxy.

Ji J1, Song X1,2, Liu J1,2, Yan Z1,2, Huo C1, Zhang S1,2, Su M3, Liao L3, Wang W4, Ni Z4, Hao Y5,6, Zeng H1,2.

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Institute of Optoelectronics &Nanomaterials, Key Laboratory of Advanced Display Materials and Devices (Ministry of Industry and Information Technology), College of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, Nanjing 210094, China.
Herbert Gleiter Institute of Nanoscience, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, Nanjing 210094, China.
Department of Physics and Key Laboratory of Artificial Mircro- and Nano-structures of Ministry of Education, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China.
Department of Physics, Southeast University, Nanjing 211189, China.
Center for Integrated Science and Engineering &Department of Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University, New York, New York 10027, USA.
National Laboratory of Solid-State Microstructures and Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China.


Unlike the unstable black phosphorous, another two-dimensional group-VA material, antimonene, was recently predicted to exhibit good stability and remarkable physical properties. However, the synthesis of high-quality monolayer or few-layer antimonenes, sparsely reported, has greatly hindered the development of this new field. Here, we report the van der Waals epitaxy growth of few-layer antimonene monocrystalline polygons, their atomical microstructure and stability in ambient condition. The high-quality, few-layer antimonene monocrystalline polygons can be synthesized on various substrates, including flexible ones, via van der Waals epitaxy growth. Raman spectroscopy and transmission electron microscopy reveal that the obtained antimonene polygons have buckled rhombohedral atomic structure, consistent with the theoretically predicted most stable β-phase allotrope. The very high stability of antimonenes was observed after aging in air for 30 days. First-principle and molecular dynamics simulation results confirmed that compared with phosphorene, antimonene is less likely to be oxidized and possesses higher thermodynamic stability in oxygen atmosphere at room temperature. Moreover, antimonene polygons show high electrical conductivity up to 104 S m-1 and good optical transparency in the visible light range, promising in transparent conductive electrode applications.

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