Catalyst-free synthesis of sub-5 nm silicon nanowire arrays with massive lattice contraction and wide bandgap

Sen Gao, Sanghyun Hong, Soohyung Park, Hyun Young Jung, Wentao Liang, Yonghee Lee, Chi Won Ahn, Ji Young Byun, Juyeon Seo, Myung Gwan Hahm, Hyehee Kim, Kiwoong Kim, Yeonjin Yi, Hailong Wang, Moneesh Upmanyu, Sung Goo Lee, Yoshikazu Homma, Humberto Terrones, Yung Joon Jung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


The need for miniaturized and high-performance devices has attracted enormous attention to the development of quantum silicon nanowires. However, the preparation of abundant quantities of silicon nanowires with the effective quantum-confined dimension remains challenging. Here, we prepare highly dense and vertically aligned sub-5 nm silicon nanowires with length/diameter aspect ratios greater than 10,000 by developing a catalyst-free chemical vapor etching process. We observe an unusual lattice reduction of up to 20% within ultra-narrow silicon nanowires and good oxidation stability in air compared to conventional silicon. Moreover, the material exhibits a direct optical bandgap of 4.16 eV and quasi-particle bandgap of 4.75 eV with the large exciton binding energy of 0.59 eV, indicating the significant phonon and electronic confinement. The results may provide an opportunity to investigate the chemistry and physics of highly confined silicon quantum nanostructures and may explore their potential uses in nanoelectronics, optoelectronics, and energy systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3467
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology


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