Sub-bandgap photoluminescence properties of multilayer h-BN-on-sapphire

Shantanu Saha, Yu Chen Chang, Tilo Hongwei Yang, Anthony Rice, Arnob Ghosh, Weicheng You, Mary Crawford, Ting Hua Lu, Yann Wen Lan, Shamsul Arafin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Two-dimensional hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) materials have garnered increasing attention due to its ability of hosting intrinsic quantum point defects. This paper presents a photoluminescence (PL) mapping study related to sub-bandgap-level emission in bulk-like multilayer h-BN films. Spatial PL intensity distributions were carefully analyzed with 500 nm spatial resolution in terms of zero phonon line (ZPL) and phonon sideband (PSB) emission-peaks and their linewidths, thereby identifying the potential quantum point defects within the films. Two types of ZPL and PSB emissions were confirmed from the point defects located at the non-edge and edge of the films. Our statistical PL data from the non-edge-and edge-areas of the sample consistently reveal broad and narrow emissions, respectively. The measured optical properties of these defects and the associated ZPL peak shift and line broadening as a function of temperature between 77° and 300° K are qualitatively and quantitatively explained. Moreover, an enhancement of the photostable PL emission by at least a factor of ×3 is observed when our pristine h-BN was irradiated with a 532 nm laser.

Original languageEnglish
Article number215702
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2022 May 21


  • dangling bond
  • h-BN
  • photoluminescence
  • quantum point defects
  • single photon emission
  • zero phonon line

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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