Abstract:
Density functional theory and density functional perturbation theory are used to investigate the electronic and vibrational properties of TiS$_2$. Within the local density approximation the material is a semi-metal both in the bulk and in the monolayer form. Most interestingly we observe a Kohn anomaly in the bulk phonon dispersion, which turns into a charge density wave instability when TiS$_2$ is thinned to less than four monolayers. Such charge density wave phase can be tuned by compressive strain, which appears to be the control parameter of the instability.

Abstract:
Graphene, topological insulators, and Weyl semimetals are three widely studied materials classes which possess Dirac or Weyl cones arising from either sublattice symmetry or spin-orbit coupling. In this work, we present a theory of a new class of bulk Dirac and Weyl cones, dubbed Weyl orbital semimetals, where the orbital polarization and texture inversion between two electronic states at discrete momenta lend itself into protected Dirac or Weyl cones without spin-orbit coupling. We also predict several families of Weyl orbital semimetals including V$_3$S$_4$, NiTi3S6, BLi, and PbO$_2$ via first-principle band structure calculations. We find that the highest Fermi velocity predicted in some of these materials is even larger than that of the existing Dirac materials. The synthesis of Weyl orbital semimetals will not only expand the territory of Dirac materials beyond the quintessential spin-orbit coupled systems and hexagonal lattice to the entire periodic table, but it may also open up new possibilities for orbital controlled electronics or `orbitronics'.

Abstract:
We use a first-principles based self-consistent momentum-resolved density fluctuation (MRDF) model to compute the combined effects of electron-electron and electron-phonon interactions to describe the superconducting dome in the correlated MoS2 thin flake and TiSe2. We find that without including the electron-electron interaction, the electron-phonon coupling and the superconducting transition temperature (Tc) are overestimated in both these materials. However, once the full angular and dynamical fluctuations of the spin and charge density induced quasiparticle self-energy effects are included, the electron-phonon coupling and Tc are reduced to the experimental value. With doping, both electronic correlation and electron-phonon coupling grows, and above some doping value, the former becomes so large that it starts to reduce the quasiparticle-phonon coupling constant and Tc, creating a superconducting dome, in agreement with experiments.

Abstract:
2D materials are well-known to exhibit interesting phenomena due to quantum confinement. Here, we show that quantum confinement, together with structural anisotropy, result in an electric-field-tunable Dirac cone in 2D black phosphorus. Using density functional theory calculations, we find that an electric field, E_ext, applied normal to a 2D black phosphorus thin film, can reduce the direct band gap of few-layer black phosphorus, resulting in an insulator-to-metal transition at a critical field, E_c. Increasing E_ext beyond E_c can induce a Dirac cone in the system, provided the black phosphorus film is sufficiently thin. The electric field strength can tune the position of the Dirac cone and the Dirac-Fermi velocities, the latter being similar in magnitude to that in graphene. We show that the Dirac cone arises from an anisotropic interaction term between the frontier orbitals that are spatially separated due to the applied field, on different halves of the 2D slab. When this interaction term becomes vanishingly small for thicker films, the Dirac cone can no longer be induced. Spin-orbit coupling can gap out the Dirac cone at certain electric fields; however, a further increase in field strength reduces the spin-orbit-induced gap, eventually resulting in a topological-insulator-to-Dirac-semi-metal transition.

Abstract:
Ab-initio density functional theory calculations are performed to study the electronic properties of a MoS2 monolayer deposited over a SiO2 substrate in the presence of interface impurities and defects. When MoS2 is placed on a defect-free substrate the oxide plays an insignificant role, since the conduction band top and the valence band minimum of MoS2 are located approximately in the middle of the SiO2 band-gap. However, if Na impurities and O dangling bonds are introduced at the SiO2 surface, these lead to localized states, which modulate the conductivity of the MoS2 monolayer from n- to p-type. Our results show that the conductive properties of MoS2 deposited on SiO2 are mainly determined by the detailed structure of the MoS2 /SiO2 interface, and suggest that doping the substrate can represent a viable strategy for engineering MoS2 -based devices.

Abstract:
{\it Ab initio} density functional theory calculations are performed to investigate the electronic structure of MoS$_2$ armchair nanoribbons in the presence of an external static electric field. Such nanoribbons, which are nonmagnetic and semiconducting, exhibit a set of weakly interacting edge states whose energy position determines the band-gap of the system. We show that, by applying an external transverse electric field, $E_\mathrm{ext}$, the nanoribbons band-gap can be significantly reduced, leading to a metal-insulator transition beyond a certain critical value. Moreover, the presence of a sufficiently high density of states at the Fermi level in the vicinity of the metal-insulator transition leads to the onset of Stoner ferromagnetism that can be modulated, and even extinguished, by $E_\mathrm{ext}$. In the case of bi-layer nanoribbons we further show that the band-gap can be changed from indirect to direct by applying a transverse field, an effect which might be of significance for opto-electronics applications.

Abstract:
Density functional theory is used to systematically study the electronic and magnetic properties of doped MoS$_2$ monolayers, where the dopants are incorporated both via S/Mo substitution or as adsorbates. Among the possible substitutional dopants at the Mo site, Nb is identified as suitable p-type dopant, while Re is the donor with the lowest activation energy. When dopants are simply adsorbed on a monolayer we find that alkali metals shift the Fermi energy into the MoS$_2$ conduction band, making the system n-type. Finally, the adsorption of charged molecules is considered, mimicking an ionic liquid environment. We find that molecules adsorption can lead to both n- and p-type conductivity, depending on the charge polarity of the adsorbed species.

Abstract:
We demonstrate giant magnetoresistance in Fe/MoS$_2$/Fe junctions by means of \textit{ab-initio} transport calculations. We show that junctions incorporating either a mono- or a bi-layer of MoS$_2$ are metallic and that Fe acts as an efficient spin injector into MoS$_2$ with an efficiency of about 45\%. This is the result of the strong coupling between the Fe and S atoms at the interface. For junctions of greater thickness a maximum magnetoresistance of $\sim$300\% is obtained, which remains robust with the applied bias as long as transport is in the tunneling limit. A general recipe for improving the magnetoresistance in spin valves incorporating layered transition metal dichalcogenides is proposed.

Abstract:
Two-dimensional (2D) layered transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) have been recently proposed as appealing candidate materials for spintronic applications owing to their distinctive atomic crystal structure and exotic physical properties arising from the large bonding anisotropy. Here we introduce the first MoS2-based spin-valves that employ monolayer MoS2 as the nonmagnetic spacer. In contrast with what expected from the semiconducting band-structure of MoS2, the vertically sandwiched-MoS2 layers exhibit metallic behavior. This originates from their strong hybridization with the Ni and Fe atoms of the Permalloy (Py) electrode. The spin-valve effect is observed up to 240 K, with the highest magnetoresistance (MR) up to 0.73% at low temperatures. The experimental work is accompanied by the first principle electron transport calculations, which reveal an MR of ~ 9% for an ideal Py/MoS2/Py junction. Our results clearly identify TMDs as a promising spacer compound in magnetic tunnel junctions and may open a new avenue for the TMDs-based spintronic applications.

Abstract:
Standard free energies (ΔG^{0}_{t}(i) ) and entropies (ΔS^{0}_{t}(i)) of transfer of some homologous α-amino acids viz. glycine (gly), dl-alanine (ala), dl-α-amino butyric acid (aba) and dl-nor-valine (nor-val) from protic ethylene glycol (EG) to dipolar aprotic N,N-dimethyl formamide (DMF) have been evaluated from solubility measure-ments at five equidistant temperatures i.e from 15 to 35^{0}C. The observed ΔG^{0}_{t}(i) and TΔS^{0}_{t}(i) Vs composition profiles are complicated because of the various interaction effects. The chemical effects of the transfer Gibbs energies (ΔG^{0}_{t.ch}(i)) and entropies of transfer (ΔS^{0}_{t.ch}(i)) have been obtained after elimination of cavity effect, estimated by the scaled particle theory and dipole-dipole interaction effects, estimated by the use of Keesom-orientation expression. The chemical contributions of transfer energetics of homologous α-amino acids are guided by the composite effects of increased dispersion interaction, basicity and decreased acidity, hydrogen bonding effects and solvophobic solvation of ethylene glycol and N, N-dimethyl formamide mixed solvent as compared to that of reference solvent (ethylene glycol).