Soliton signature in the phonon spectrum of twisted bilayer graphene

Michael Lamparski, Benoit Van Troeye, Vincent Meunier

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The phonon spectra of twisted bilayer graphene (tBLG) are analyzed for a series of 692 twisting angle values in the [0, 30°] range. The evolution of the phonon bandstructure as a function of twist angle is examined using a band unfolding scheme where the large number of phonon modes computed at the Γ point for the large moiré tBLG supercells are unfolded onto the Brillouin Zone (BZ) of one of the two constituent layers. In addition to changes to the low-frequency breathing and shear modes, a series of well-defined side-bands around high-symmetry points of the extended BZ emerge due to the twist angle-dependent structural relaxation. The results are rationalized by introducing a nearly-free-phonon model that highlights the central role played by solitons in the description of the new phonon branches, which are particularly pronounced for structures with small twist angles, below a buckling angle of θB ∼ 3.75°.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number025050
Journal2D Materials
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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