A Kinetic Monte Carlo Simulation Method of Van Der Waals Epitaxy for Atomistic Nucleation-Growth Processes of Transition Metal Dichalcogenides
Wallace, Robert M.
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Controlled growth of crystalline solids is critical for device applications, and atomistic modeling methods have been developed for bulk crystalline solids. Kinetic Monte Carlo (KMC) simulation method provides detailed atomic scale processes during a solid growth over realistic time scales, but its application to the growth modeling of van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures has not yet been developed. Specifically, the growth of single-layered transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) is currently facing tremendous challenges, and a detailed understanding based on KMC simulations would provide critical guidance to enable controlled growth of vdW heterostructures. In this work, a KMC simulation method is developed for the growth modeling on the vdW epitaxy of TMDs. The KMC method has introduced full material parameters for TMDs in bottom-up synthesis: metal and chalcogen adsorption/desorption/diffusion on substrate and grown TMD surface, TMD stacking sequence, chalcogen/metal ratio, flake edge diffusion and vacancy diffusion. The KMC processes result in multiple kinetic behaviors associated with various growth behaviors observed in experiments. Different phenomena observed during vdW epitaxy process are analysed in terms of complex competitions among multiple kinetic processes. The KMC method is used in the investigation and prediction of growth mechanisms, which provide qualitative suggestions to guide experimental study.