"Carrier-specific dynamics in 2H-MoTe2 observed by femtosecond soft x-ray absorption spectroscopy using an x-ray free-electron laser"

Alexander Britz: Andrew R. Attar, Xiang Zhang, Hung-Tzu Chang, Clara Nyby, Aravind Krishnamoorthy, Sang Han Park, Soonnam Kwon, Minseok Kim, Dennis Nordlund, Sami Sainio, Tony F. Heinz, Stephen R. Leone, Aaron M. Lindenberg, Aiichiro Nakano, Pulickel Ajayan, Priya Vashishta, David Fritz, Ming-Fu Lin, Uwe Bergmann; Structural Dynamics, 01/13/21.

Additional Authors: Andrew R. Attar, Xiang Zhang, Hung-Tzu Chang, Clara Nyby, Aravind Krishnamoorthy, Sang Han Park, Soonnam Kwon, Minseok Kim, Dennis Nordlund, Sami Sainio, Tony F. Heinz, Stephen R. Leone, Aaron M. Lindenberg, Aiichiro Nakano, Pulickel Ajayan, Priya Vashishta, David Fritz, Ming-Fu Lin, Uwe Bergmann

Abstract:

Femtosecond carrier dynamics in layered 2H-MoTe2 semiconductor crystals have been investigated using soft x-ray transient absorption spectroscopy at the x-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) of the Pohang Accelerator Laboratory. Following above-bandgap optical excitation of 2H-MoTe2, the photoexcited hole distribution is directly probed via short-lived transitions from the Te 3d5/2 core level (M5-edge, 572–577eV) to transiently unoccupied states in the valence band. The optically excited electrons are separately probed via the reduced absorption probability at the Te M5-edge involving partially occupied states of the conduction band. A 400 ±110 fs delay is observed between this transient electron signal near the conduction band minimum compared to higher-lying states within the conduction band, which we assign to hot electron relaxation. Additionally, the transient absorption signals below and above the TeM5 edge, assigned to photoexcited holes and electrons, respectively, are observed to decay concomitantly on a 1–2 ps timescale, which is interpreted as electron–hole recombination. The present work provides a benchmark for applications of XFELs for soft x-ray absorption studies of carrier-specific dynamics in semiconductors, and future opportunities enabled by this method are discussed.