Nano-photocurrent Mapping of Local Electronic Structure in Twisted Bilayer Graphene

S. S. Sunku, A. S. McLeod, T. Stauber, H. Yoo, D. Halbertal, G. Ni, A. Sternbach, B.-Y. Jiang, T. Taniguchi, K. Watanabe, P. Kim, M. M. Fogler and D. N. Basov

Nano Letters 20, 2958 (2020)
We report a combined nano-photocurrent and infrared nanoscopy study of twisted bilayer graphene (TBG) enabling access to the local electronic phenomena at length scales as short as 20 nm. We show that the photocurrent changes sign at carrier densities tracking the local superlattice density of states of TBG. We use this property to identify domains of varying local twist angle by local photothermoelectric effect. Consistent with the photocurrent study, infrared nanoimaging experiments reveal optical conductivity features dominated by twist-angle-dependent interband transitions. Our results provide a fast and robust method for mapping the electronic structure of TBG and suggest that similar methods can be broadly applied to probe electronic inhomogeneities of Moiré superlattices in other van der Waals heterostructures.