Synthesis and Properties of Monolayer MnSe with Unusual Atomic Structure and Antiferromagnetic Ordering
Transition metal chalcogenides (TMCs) are a large family of 2D materials that are currently attracting intense interest. TMCs with 3d transition metals provide opportunities for introducing magnetism and strong correlations into the material with manganese standing out as a particularly attractive option due to its large magnetic moment. Here we report on the successful synthesis of monolayer manganese selenide on a NbSe2 substrate. Using scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy experiments and global structure prediction calculations at the density functional theory level, we identify the atomic structure and magnetic and electronic properties of the layered Mn2Se2 phase. The structure is similar to the layered bulk phase of CuI or a buckled bilayer of h-BN. Interestingly, our results suggest that the monolayer is antiferromagnetic, but with an unusual out-of-plane ordering that results in two ferromagnetic planes.