Lithiation-exfoliation produces single to few-layered MoS2 and WS2 sheets dispersible in water. However, the process transforms them from the pristine semiconducting 2H phase to a distorted metallic phase. Recovery of the semiconducting properties typically involves heating of the chemically exfoliated sheets at elevated temperatures. Therefore, it has been largely limited to sheets deposited on solid substrates. Here, we report the dispersion of chemically exfoliated MoS2 sheets in high boiling point organic solvents enabled by surface functionalization and the controllable recovery of their semiconducting properties directly in solution. This process connects the scalability of chemical exfoliation with the simplicity of solution processing, ultimately enabling a facile method for tuning the metal to semiconductor transitions of MoS2 and WS2 within a liquid medium.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry