Imaging resonant dissipation from individual atomic defects in graphene.

D Halbertal, Shalom M Ben, A Uri, K Bagani, AY Meltzer, I Marcus, Y Myasoedov, J Birkbeck, LS Levitov, AK Geim, E Zeldov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Conversion of electric current into heat involves microscopic processes that operate on nanometer length scales and release minute amounts of power. Although central to our understanding of the electrical properties of materials, individual mediators of energy dissipation have so far eluded direct observation. Using scanning nanothermometry with submicrokelvin sensitivity, we visualized and controlled phonon emission from individual atomic-scale defects in graphene. The inferred electron-phonon "cooling power spectrum" exhibits sharp peaks when the Fermi level comes into resonance with electronic quasi-bound states at such defects. Rare in the bulk but abundant at graphene's edges, switchable atomic-scale phonon emitters provide the dominant dissipation mechanism. Our work offers insights for addressing key materials challenges in modern electronics and enables control of dissipation at the nanoscale.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1303-1306
Number of pages4
Issue number6368
StatePublished - 8 Dec 2017


FundersFunder number
DMR-BSF Binational Science Foundation
MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives
MIT–Israel Seed Fund
National Science Foundation1609519
Division of Materials Research
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Lloyd's Register Foundation
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research CouncilEP/K005014/1, EP/N010345/1
European Research CouncilERC-2012-ADG
Minerva Foundation
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2015653
Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung


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