Unprecedented 2D metal chloride structures are grown between sheets of bilayer graphene through intercalation of metal and chlorine atoms. Numerous spatially confined 2D phases of AlCl3 and CuCl2 distinct from their typical bulk forms are found, and the transformations between these new phases under the electron beam are directly observed by in situ scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). The density functional theory calculations confirm the metastability of the atomic structures derived from the STEM experiments and provide insights into the electronic properties of the phases, which range from insulators to semimetals. Additionally, the co-intercalation of different metal chlorides is found to create completely new hybrid systems; in-plane quasi-1D AlCl3/CuCl2 heterostructures are obtained. The existence of polymorphic phases hints at the unique possibilities for fabricating new types of 2D materials with diverse electronic properties confined between graphene sheets.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering