Ever since so-called “twisted bilayer” graphene (TBG) was discovered by stacking two sheets of graphene slightly out of alignment, research teams have found a multitude of exciting and even unusual properties for the material. The latest discovery, made by a U.S.-based research team, shows that TBG’s ability to conduct electricity changes when it’s exposed to infrared light.
The team’s findings could lead to the development of a whole new class of IR detectors using TBG, according to PhysicsWorld.
Twisted bilayer graphene’s behavior changes greatly depending on the angle of the misalignment, with 1.1 degrees for now considered the “magic” angle, at which the graphene transforms from an insulator to a highly efficient conductor of electricity.
The research team’s experiments with infrared light and TBG are a first. They exposed the material to light in the middle of the infrared spectrum and measured its increased or decreased conductivity depending on the angle of the twist. They found its response to the light was much stronger in TBG than an untwisted sheet of graphene.
The researchers’ findings were recently studied in the journal Nature Photonics.