Facile and reliable thickness identification of atomically thin dichalcogenide semiconductors using hyperspectral microscopy

Yu Chung Chang, Yu Kai Wang, Yen Ting Chen, Der Yuh Lin

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Although large-scale synthesis of layered two-dimensional (2D) transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) has been made possible, mechanical exfoliation of layered van der Waals crystal is still indispensable as every new material research starts with exfoliated flakes. However, it is often a tedious task to find the flakes with desired thickness and sizes. We propose a method to determine the thickness of few-layer flakes and facilitate the fast searching of flakes with a specific thickness. By using hyperspectral wild field microscopy to acquire differential reflectance and transmittance spectra, we demonstrate unambiguous recognition of typical TMDCs and their thicknesses based on their excitonic resonance features in a single step. Distinct from Raman spectroscopy or atomic force microscopy, our method is non-destructive to the sample. By knowing the contrast between different layers, we developed an algorithm to automatically search for flakes of desired thickness in situ. We extended this method to measure tin dichalcogenides, such as SnS2 and SnSe2, which are indirect bandgap semiconductors regardless of the thickness. We observed distinct spectroscopic behaviors as compared with typical TMDCs. Layer-dependent excitonic features were manifested. Our method is ideal for automatic non-destructive optical inspection in mass production in the semiconductor industry.

Original languageEnglish
Article number526
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Mar


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Science(all)

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