The deformation and fracture mechanism of two-dimensional (2D) materials are still unclear and not thoroughly investigated. Given this, mechanical properties and mechanisms are explored on example of gallium telluride (GaTe), a promising 2D semiconductor with an ultrahigh photoresponsivity and a high flexibility. Hereby, the mechanical properties of both substrate-supported and suspended GaTe multilayers were investigated through Berkovich-tip nanoindentation instead of the commonly used AFM-based nanoindentation method. An unusual concurrence of multiple pop-in and load-drop events in loading curve was observed. Theoretical calculations unveiled this concurrence originating from the interlayer-sliding mediated layers-by-layers fracture mechanism in GaTe multilayers. The van der Waals force dominated interlayer interactions between GaTe and substrates was revealed much stronger than that between GaTe interlayers, resulting in the easy sliding and fracture of multilayers within GaTe. This work introduces new insights into the deformation and fracture of GaTe and other 2D materials in flexible electronics applications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry