ChEMS Department Seminar

Event Date/Time: 
December 14, 2018 - 9:10am
Event Location: 
3540 EB
Jeff Cain
Exploring Flatland: 2D Materials and Van der Waals Heterostructures


Over the past several decades, the concept of dimensionality, and the engineering of materials via changes in dimensionality, has captured the collective imaginations of the materials science, physics, and chemistry communities. This stems from the potential for advanced technological applications anchored by the expected novel physical phenomena in materials under extreme dimensional constraint, and the opportunities they present for unprecedented control of matter at sub-nanometer length scales. Nowhere has this been more evident than in the recent rise of two-dimensional (2D) materials, and scientists’ exploration of the “Flatland”. In this talk, I will highlight recent work on the controlled synthesis of 2D transition metal dichalcogenide (MX2; M=Mo, W; X=S, Se) monolayers, van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures, and 2D alloys. I will also discuss recent advances in the fabrication of optoelectronic devices from vdW heterostructures. Nanoscale heterostructures need not be limited to 2D, thus I will also report synthesis and properties of a new 0D-2D heterostructure, termed Au@MoS2, where an Au nanoparticle is snugly and contiguously encapsulated by few-layer shells of MoS2. The future is bright for low- and multi-dimensional heterostructures and nanocomposite design represents a versatile strategy to address questions facing 2D materials’ advancement, as specific design challenges arise.


Jeffrey D. Cain is a postdoctoral scholar with a joint position in the Materials Sciences Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Physics Department at the University of California, Berkeley. At Berkeley, his research is centered around the synthesis, characterization, and hierarchical assembly of nanoscale, low-dimensional, and quantum materials. Prior to arriving in Berkeley, he received his Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University, where he studied the growth of two-dimensional materials. Jeffrey received a B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering and a B.S. in Physics, with honors, from Michigan State University in 2012.