Elasticity of MoS2 sheets by mechanical deformation observed by in situ electron microscopy

Gilberto Casillas, Ulises Santiago, Héctor BarroÌn, Diego Alducin, Arturo Ponce, Miguel José-Yacamán

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


MoS2 has been the focus of extensive research due to its potential applications. More recently, the mechanical properties of MoS2 layers have raised interest due to applications in flexible electronics. In this article, we show in situ transmission electron microcsopy (TEM) observation of the mechanical response of a few layers of MoS2 to an external load. We used a scanning tunneling microscope (STM) tip mounted on a TEM stage to induce deformation on nanosheets of MoS2 containing few layers. The results confirm the outstanding mechanical properties on the MoS2. The layers can be bent close to 180°. However, when the tip is retrieved the initial structure is recovered. Evidence indicates that there is a significant bond reconstruction during the bending with an outstanding capability to recover the initial bond structure. The results show that flexibility of three layers of MoS2 remains the same as a single layer while increasing the bending modulus by 3 orders of magnitude. Our findings are consistent with theoretical calculations and confirm the great potential of MoS2 for applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)710-715
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 8 2015
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • General Energy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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