Yao Group @ HKU Physics


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Welcome to Yao group

We are a theoretical group working in an interdisciplinary field across condensed matter physics, quantum physics, and optical physics. Our current research interest is on quantum spintronics, and valley and spin physics in atomically thin 2D materials and their heterostructures.

We have postdoc and PhD positions open.


Research Highlights

Valley-spintronics in 2D semiconductors and their vdW heterostructures

A trend in future electronics is to utilize internal degrees of freedom of electron, in addition to its charge, for nonvolatile information processing. Suitable candidates include the electron spin, and the valley pseudospin. The latter labels the degenerate valleys of energy bands well separated in momentum space. 2D materials, in particular the group-VI transition metal dichalcogenides, offer an exciting platform to explore valleytronics and spintronics. We have discovered a varieties of valley and spin phenomena that make possible their manipulations.




Electronic structures and theoretical modelling of two-dimensional group-VIB transition metal dichalcogenides,

Guibin Liu, Di Xiao, Yugui Yao, Xiaodong Xu and Wang Yao*,

Chem. Soc. Rev. 44, 2643 (2015) — (Link)


Spins and pseudospins in layered transition metal dichalcogenides,

X. Xu*, W. Yao*, D. Xiao and T. F. Heinz,

Nature Physics 10, 343 (2014). — (Link)


Recent papers


Topological Mosaic in Moiré superlattices of van der Waals heterobilayers,

Q. Tong, H. Yu, Q. Zhu, Y. Wang, X. Xu, W. Yao *,

Nature Physics 13, 356 (2017). — (Link)


Realization of valley and spin pumps by scattering at non-magnetic disorders,

X. An, J. Xiao, M.W-Y. Tu, H. Yu, V. I. Falko, and W. Yao*,

Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 096602 (2017). — (Link)


Anomalous light cones and valley optical selection rules of interlayer excitons in twisted heterobilayers,

H. Yu, Y. Wang, Q. Tong, X. Xu and W. Yao*,

Phys. Rev. Lett. 115, 187002 (2015). — (Link)


Valley-Polarized Exciton Dynamics in a 2D Semiconductor Heterostructure,

P. Rivera, K. Seyler, Hongyi Yu, J. Schaibley, J. Yan, D. Mandrus, Wang Yao and X. Xu,

Science 351, 688 (2016). — (Link)


Excitonic luminesence upconversion in a two-dimensional semiconductor,

A. Jones, H. Yu, J. Schaibley, J. Yan, D. Mandrus, T. Taniguchi, K. Watanabe, H. Dery, W. Yao*, X. Xu*,

Nature Physics 12, 323 (2016). — (Link)



The University of Hong Kong
Department of Physics
Pokfulam Road
Hong Kong
Tel: + 852-2219-4809
Fax: + 852-2559-9152