Electron paramagnetic resonance signature of point defects in neutron-irradiated hexagonal boron nitride

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Physical Review B, 2018, 98 (15)
Issue Date:
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© 2018 American Physical Society. Hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) is an attractive van der Waals material for studying fluorescent defects due to its large band gap. In this work, we demonstrate enhanced pink color due to neutron irradiation and perform electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) measurements. The point defects are tentatively assigned to doubly occupied nitrogen vacancies with (S=1) and a zero-field splitting (D=1.2GHz). These defects are associated with a broad visible optical absorption band and a near-infrared photoluminescence band centered at ∼490 and 820 nm, respectively. The EPR signal intensities are strongly affected by thermal treatments in the temperature range between 600 °C and 800 °C, where also the irradiation-induced pink color is lost. Our results are important for understanding of point defects in h-BN and their deployment for quantum and integrated photonic applications.
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