Realizing stimulated emission from defects in 2D-layered semiconductors has the potential to enhance the sensitivity of characterizing their defects. However, stimulated emission from defects in layered materials presents a different set of challenges in carrier lifetime and energy level design and is not achieved so far. Here, photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and first-principles theory are combined to reveal an anomalous PL intensity–temperature relation and strong polarization effects at a defect emission peak in annealed multilayer MoS2, suggesting defect-based stimulated emission. The emergence of stimulated emission behavior is also controllable (by temperature) and reversible. The observed stimulated emission behavior is supported by a three-level system involving two defect levels from chalcogen vacancies and a pump level from the conduction band edge. First-principles calculations show that the special indirect gap that enables stimulated emission is not native to pristine bulk MoS2 and only emerges under thermal strain.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics