Nanowires Bending over Backward from Strain Partitioning in Asymmetric Core–Shell Heterostructures
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The flexibility and quasi-one-dimensional nature of nanowires offer wide-ranging possibilities for novel heterostructure design and strain engineering. In this work, we realize arrays of extremely and controllably bent nanowires comprising lattice-mismatched and highly asymmetric core-shell heterostructures. Strain sharing across the nanowire heterostructures is sufficient to bend vertical nanowires over backward to contact either neighboring nanowires or the substrate itself, presenting new possibilities for designing nanowire networks and interconnects. Photoluminescence spectroscopy on bent-nanowire heterostructures reveals that spatially varying strain fields induce charge carrier drift toward the tensile-strained outside of the nanowires, and that the polarization response of absorbed and emitted light is controlled by the bending direction. This unconventional strain field is employed for light emission by placing an active region of quantum dots at the outer side of a bent nanowire to exploit the carrier drift and tensile strain. These results demonstrate how bending in nanoheterostructures opens up new degrees of freedom for strain and device engineering.
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