Angle-dependent electron confinement in graphene moiré superlattices

Francisco Sánchez-Ochoa, Andrés R. Botello-Méndez, Cecilia Noguez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

In graphene moiré superlattices, electronic interactions between layers are mostly hidden as band structures get crowded because of folding, making their interpretation cumbersome. Here, the evolution of the electronic band structure as a function of the interlayer rotation angle is studied using density functional theory followed by unfolding bands and then comparing them with their corresponding individual components. We observe interactions in regions not theoretically elucidated so far, where for small interlayer angles, gaps turn into discretelike states that are evenly spaced in energy. We find that Vppσ attractive interactions between out-of-plane orbitals from different layers are responsible for the discretization. Furthermore, when the interlayer angle becomes small, these discrete, evenly spaced states have energy differences comparable to graphene phonons. Thus they might be relevant to explain electron-phonon-assisted effects, which have been experimentally observed in graphene moiré superlattices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number075430
JournalPhysical Review B
Volume104
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2021
Externally publishedYes

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