3D architectures of Mxenes for Terahertz Applications (3D-AM-TERA)

The terahertz (THz) region of the electromagnetic spectrum finds application in different areas such as security, biological, drugs and explosions detection, imaging and astronomy. The state-of-the-art THz detectors lack high sensitivity, fast operation, and portability. The work proposed here seeks to develop my understanding of how 2D materials based MXene can upturn the THz radiation detection process. Such 2D materials are nanometer thick sheets; their interaction with the THz radiation can be strengthened when arranged into a 3D pattern. To address the conception of novel devices made of MXene sheets with enhanced light-matter interaction, I propose to develop 3D printing technology, which will populate the sample interaction area with specifically 3D arranged 2D sheets with complex percolation pathways where all the atoms will be exposed to the THz light. This will allow the maximum photon absorption in the entire photoactive assembly and thereby maximum photocurrent generation. The key questions will be addressed in this project: Q1: What are the quantitative differences in THz photoconductivity and photophysics of 3D structures and individual 2D building block? Q2: Does the device performance depend on some key intrinsic parameters of layered MXenes such as attached functional groups, layer thickness, doping and/or defects? Q3: How will the structuring of the 3D architecture influence the response of the device? Q4: Can 3D printing fill the THz gap and form into new generation of THz devices? This proposal lies at the frontiers of two leading research areas, 3D printing and THz spectroscopy of 2D MXenes. Mainly, the proposal is a combination of excellent science in developing advanced devices based on 3D printing of 2D materials with dedicated investigation on their ultrafast far-field and near-field THz spectroscopic properties.