Daniela Zahn, Patrick-Nigel Hildebrandt, Thomas Vasileiadis, Yoav William Windsor, Hélène Seiler, and Ralph Ernstorfer:
Nano Lett.. 20 (5), 3728-3733 (2020), pp. 6;
arXiv:2002.12038 [cond-mat.mtrl-sci] (2020), pp. 5;
DOI: arXiv:2002.12038 [cond-mat.mtrl-sci]
Black phosphorus has recently attracted significant attention for its highly anisotropic properties. A variety of ultrafast optical spectroscopies has been applied to probe the carrier response to photoexcitation, but the complementary lattice response has remained unaddressed. Here we employ femtosecond electron diffraction to explore how the structural anisotropy impacts the lattice dynamics after photoexcitation. We observe two timescales in the lattice response, which we attribute to electron-phonon and phonon-phonon thermalization. Pronounced differences between armchair and zigzag directions are observed, indicating a non-thermal state of the lattice lasting up to ~60 picoseconds. This non-thermal state is characterized by a modified anisotropy of the atomic vibrations compared to equilibrium. Our findings provide insights in both electron-phonon as well as phonon-phonon coupling and bear direct relevance for any application of black phosphorus in non-equilibrium conditions.
The original publication is available by link DOI: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.0c00734