Helical Crystal: A New Material With Surprising Potentials, Like Superconductivity

Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have created “new inorganic crystals made of stacks of atomically thin sheets that unexpectedly spiral like a nanoscale card deck.” They said that the structure may yield unique optical, electronic and thermal properties, such as superconductivity:

These helical crystals are made of stacked layers of germanium sulfide, a semiconductor material that, like graphene, readily forms sheets that are only a few atoms or even a single atom thick. Such "nanosheets" are usually referred to as "2D materials."
"No one expected 2D materials to grow in such a way. It's like a surprise gift," said Jie Yao, an assistant professor of materials science and engineering at UC Berkeley. "We believe that it may bring great opportunities for materials research."

Read more at EurekAlert! to know more about this recent discovery!

Image Credit: UC Berkeley image by Yin Liu

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