Electrons Surf Phason Waves in Moire Bilayers

I Maity and AA Mostofi and J Lischner, NANO LETTERS, 23, 4870-4875 (2023).

DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.3c00490

We investigate the effect of thermal fluctuations on the atomic and electronic structure of a twisted MoSe2/WSe2 heterobilayer using a combination of classical molecular dynamics and ab initio density functional theory calculations. Our calculations reveal that thermally excited phason modes give rise to an almost rigid motion of the moire lattice. Electrons and holes in low-energy states are localized in specific stacking regions of the moire unit cell and follow the thermal motion of these regions. In other words, charge carriers surf phason waves that are excited at finite temperatures. We also show that such surfing survives in the presence of a substrate and frozen potential. This effect has potential implications for the design of charge and exciton transport devices based on moire materials.

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