Unidirectional Spin–Orbit Interaction Induced by the Line Defect in Monolayer Transition Metal Dichalcogenides for High-Performance Devices

Spin–orbit (SO) interaction is an indispensable element in the field of spintronics for effectively manipulating the spin of carriers. However, in crystalline solids, the momentum-dependent SO effective magnetic field generally results in spin randomization by a process known as the Dyakonov–Perel spin relaxation, leading to the loss of spin information. To overcome this obstacle, the persistent spin helix (PSH) state with a unidirectional SO field was proposed but difficult to achieve in real materials. Here, on the basis of first-principles calculations and tight-binding model analysis, we report for the first time a unidirectional SO field in monolayer transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs, MX2, M = Mo, W; and X = S, Se) induced by two parallel chalcogen vacancy lines. By changing the relative positions of the two vacancy lines, the direction of the SO field can be tuned from x to y. Moreover, using k·p perturbation theory and group theory analysis, we demonstrate that the emerging unidirectional SO field is subject to both the structural symmetry and 1D nature of such defects engineered in 2D TMDs. In particular, through transport calculations, we confirm that the predicted SO states carry highly coherent spin current. Our findings shed new light on creating PSH states for high-performance spintronic devices.