High quality wafer-scale free-standing WS2 grown by van der Waals rheotaxy (vdWR) using Ni as a texture promoting layer is reported. The microstructure of vdWR grown WS2 was significantly modified from mixture of crystallites with their c-axes both parallel to (type I) and perpendicular to (type II) the substrate to large type II crystallites. Wafer-scale transfer of vdWR grown WS2 onto different substrates by an etching-free technique was demonstrated for the first time that utilized the hydrophobic property of WS2 and hydrophilic property of sapphire. Our results show that vdWR is a reliable technique to obtain type-II textured crystallites in WS2, which is the key factor for the wafer-scale etching-free transfer. The transferred films were found to be free of observable wrinkles, cracks, or polymer residues. High quality p-n junctions fabricated by room-temperature transfer of the p-type WS2 onto an n-type GaN was demonstrated with a small leakage current density of 29.6 μA/cm2 at-1 V which shows superior performances compared to the directly grown WS2/GaN heterojunctions.
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