Prediction of a two-dimensional crystalline structure of nitrogen atoms
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
American Physical Society
125420-1 - 125420-8
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Based on first-principles density functional calculations, we predict that nitrogen atoms can form a single-layer, buckled honeycomb structure called nitrogene, which is rigid and stable even above room temperature. This 2D crystalline phase of nitrogen, which corresponds to a local minimum in the Born-Oppenheimer surface, is a nonmagnetic insulator with saturated π bonds. When grown on a substrate like Al(111) surface and graphene, nitrogene binds weakly to substrates and hence preserves its free-standing properties, but it can easily be pealed off. Zigzag and armchair nanoribbons of nitrogene have fundamental band gaps derived from reconstructed edge states. These band gaps are tunable with size and suitable for the emerging field of 2D electronics. Nitrogene forms not only bilayer, but also 3D graphitic multilayer structures. Single-layer nitrogene can nucleate and grow on the armchair edges of hexagonal boron nitride.