Functionalization of Transition Metal Dichalcogenides with Metallic Nanoparticles: Implications for Doping and Gas-Sensing

Transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs), belonging to the class of two-dimensional (2D) layered materials, have instigated a lot of interest in diverse application fields due to their unique electrical, mechanical, magnetic, and optical properties. Tuning the electrical properties of TMDs through charge transfer or doping is necessary for various optoelectronic applications. This paper presents the experimental investigation of the doping effect on TMDs, mainly focusing on molybdenum disulfide (MoS2), by metallic nanoparticles (NPs), exploring noble metals such as silver (Ag), palladium (Pd), and platinum (Pt) as well as the low workfunction metals such as scandium (Sc) and yttrium (Y) for the first time. The dependence of the doping behavior of MoS2 on the metal workfunction is demonstrated and it is shown that Pt nanoparticles can lead to as large as 137 V shift in threshold voltage of a back-gated monolayered MoS2 FET. Variation of the MoS2 FET transfer curves with the increase in the dose of NPs as well as the effect of the number of MoS2 layers on the doping characteristics are also discussed for the first time. Moreover, the doping effect on WSe2 is studied with the first demonstration of p-type doping using Pt NPs. Apart from doping, the use of metallic NP functionalized TMDs for gas sensing application is also demonstrated.