Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Electron 'sniper' targets graphene

Abstract:
Because of its intriguing properties graphene could be the ideal material for building new kinds of electronic devices such as sensors, screens, or even quantum computers.

Electron 'sniper' targets graphene

Oxford, UK | Posted on October 25th, 2012

One of the keys to exploiting graphene's potential is being able to create atomic-scale defects - where carbon atoms in its flat, honeycomb-like structure are rearranged or 'knocked out' - as these influence its electrical, chemical, magnetic, and mechanical properties.

A team led by Oxford University scientists report in Nature Communications a new approach to a new approach to engineering graphene's atomic structure with unprecedented precision.

'Current approaches for producing defects in graphene are either like a 'shotgun' where the entire sample is sprayed with high energy ions or electrons to cause widespread defects, or a chemistry approach where many regions of the graphene are chemically reacted,' said Jamie Warner from Oxford University's Department of Materials, a member of the team.

'Both methods lack any form of control in terms of spatial precision and also the defect type, but to date are the only reported methods known for defect creation.'

The new method replaces the 'shotgun' with something more like a sniper rifle: a minutely-controlled beam of electrons fired from an electron microscope.

'The shotgun approach is restricted to micron scale precision, which is roughly an area of 10,000,000 square nanometres, we demonstrated a precision to within 100 square nanometres, which is about four orders of magnitude better,' explains Alex Robertson of Oxford University's Department of Materials, another member of the team.

Yet it isn't just about the accuracy of a single 'shot'; the researchers also show that by controlling the length of time graphene is exposed to their focused beam of electrons they can control the size and type of defect created.

'Our study reveals for the first time that only a few types of defects are actually stable in graphene, with several defects being quenched by surface atoms or relaxing back to pristine by bond rotations,' Jamie tells me.

The ability to create just the right kind of stable defects in graphene's crystal structure is going to be vital if its properties are to be harnessed for applications such as mobile phones and flexible displays.

'Defect sites in graphene are much more chemically reactive, so we can use defects as a site for chemical functionalisation of the graphene. So we can attach certain molecules, such as biomolecules, to the graphene to act as a sensor,' Alex tells me.

'Defects in graphene can also give rise to localized electron spin, an attribute that has important future use in quantum nanotechnology and quantum computers.'

At the moment scaling up the team's technique into a manufacturing process to create graphene-based technologies is still a way off. Currently electron microscopes are the only systems that can achieve the necessary exquisite control of an electron beam.

But, Alex says, it is always possible that a scalable electron beam lithography type technique may be developed in the future that could allow for defect patterning in graphene.

And it's worth remembering that it wasn't so long ago that the technology needed to etch millions of transistors onto a tiny slice of silicon seemed like an impossible dream.

####

About University of Oxford
Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world, and a leader in learning, teaching and research.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Press & Information Office
telephone:+44 01865 280528

Copyright © University of Oxford

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Nature Communications paper:

Department of Materials:

Related News Press

News and information

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Graphene/ Graphite

Graphene holds up under high pressure: Used in filtration membranes, ultrathin material could help make desalination more productive April 24th, 2017

Two-dimensional melting of hard spheres experimentally unravelled after 60 years: First definitive experimental evidence of two-dimensional melting of hard spheres April 21st, 2017

Researchers “iron out” graphene’s wrinkles: New technique produces highly conductive graphene wafers April 3rd, 2017

New ultrafast flexible and transparent memory devices could herald new era of electronics April 1st, 2017

Intertronics introduce new nanoparticle deagglomeration technology March 15th, 2017

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

New ultrafast flexible and transparent memory devices could herald new era of electronics April 1st, 2017

UC researchers use gold coating to control luminescence of nanowires: University of Cincinnati physicists manipulate nanowire semiconductors in pursuit of making electronics smaller, faster and cheaper March 17th, 2017

Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance: Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs March 10th, 2017

Quantum Computing

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Harris & Harris Group Issues Its Financial Statements as of December 31, 2016, Posts Its Annual Shareholder Letter, And Will Host a Conference Call for Shareholders on Friday, March 17, 2017 March 15th, 2017

Sorting machine for atoms:Researchers at the University of Bonn clear a further hurdle on the path to creating quantum computers February 10th, 2017

First ever blueprint unveiled to construct a large scale quantum computer February 3rd, 2017

Sensors

Better living through pressure: Functional nanomaterials made easy April 19th, 2017

A Sensitive And Dynamic Tactile Sensor Read more from Asian Scientist Magazine at: https://www.asianscientist.com/2017/04/tech/tactile-3d-active-matrix-sensor/ April 18th, 2017

AIM Photonics Presents Cutting-Edge Integrated Photonics Technology Developments to Packed House at OFC 2017, the Optical Networking and Communication Conference & Exhibition April 11th, 2017

New technology could offer cheaper, faster food testing: Specialized droplets interact with bacteria and can be analyzed using a smartphone April 7th, 2017

Discoveries

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Announcements

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Tools

New Product Nanoparticle preparation from Intertronics with new Thinky NP-100 Nano Pulveriser April 26th, 2017

Affordable STM32 Cloud-Connectable Kit from STMicroelectronics Puts More Features On-Board for Fast and Flexible IoT-Device Development April 26th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

NanoMONITOR shares its latest developments concerning the NanoMONITOR Software and the Monitoring stations April 21st, 2017

Printing/Lithography/Inkjet/Inks/Bio-printing

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

New stem cell technique shows promise for bone repair January 25th, 2017

NUS researchers achieve major breakthrough in flexible electronics: New classes of printable electrically conducting polymer materials make better electrodes for plastic electronics and advanced semiconductor devices January 14th, 2017

Nanowire 'inks' enable paper-based printable electronics: Highly conductive films make functional circuits without adding high heat January 4th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project