Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > ORNL pushes the boundaries of electron microscopy to unlock the potential of graphene

The atomic resolution Z-contrast images show individual silicon atoms bonded differently in graphene.
The atomic resolution Z-contrast images show individual silicon atoms bonded differently in graphene.

Abstract:
Electron microscopy at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is providing unprecedented views of the individual atoms in graphene, offering scientists a chance to unlock the material's full potential for uses from engine combustion to consumer electronics.

ORNL pushes the boundaries of electron microscopy to unlock the potential of graphene

Oak Ridge, TN | Posted on November 16th, 2012

Graphene crystals were first isolated in 2004. They are two-dimensional (one-atom in thickness), harder than diamonds and far stronger than steel, providing unprecedented stiffness, electrical and thermal properties. By viewing the atomic and bonding configurations of individual graphene atoms, scientists are able to suggest ways to optimize materials so they are better suited for specific applications.

In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, a team of researchers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Vanderbilt University used aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy to study the atomic and electronic structure of silicon impurities in graphene.

"We have used new experimental and computational tools to reveal the bonding characteristics of individual impurities in graphene. For instance, we can now differentiate between a non-carbon atom that is two-dimensionally or three-dimensionally bonded in graphene. In fact, we were finally able to directly visualize a bonding configuration that was predicted in the 1930s but has never been observed experimentally," said ORNL researcher Juan-Carlos Idrobo. Electrons in orbit around an atom fall into four broad categories - s, p, d and f - based on factors including symmetry and energy levels.

"We observed that silicon d-states participate in the bonding only when the silicon is two-dimensionally coordinated," Idrobo said. "There are many elements such as chromium, iron, and copper where the d-states or d-electrons play a dominant role in determining how the element bonds in a material."

By studying the atomic and electronic structure of graphene and identifying any impurities, researchers can better predict which elemental additions will improve the material's performance.

Slightly altering the chemical makeup of graphene could customize the material, making it more suitable for a variety of applications. For example, one elemental addition may make the material a better replacement for the platinum catalytic converters in cars, while another may allow it to function better in electronic devices or as a membrane.

Graphene has the potential to replace the inner workings of electronic gadgets people use every day because of its ability to conduct heat and electricity and its optical transparency. It offers a cheaper and more abundant alternative to indium, a limited resource that is widely used in the transparent conducting coating present in almost all electronic display devices such as digital displays in cars, TVs, laptops and handheld gadgets like cell phones, tablets and music players.

Researchers expect the imaging techniques demonstrated at ORNL to be used to understand the atomic structures and bonding characteristics of atoms in other two-dimensional materials, too.

The authors of the paper are Wu Zhou, Myron Kapetanakis, Micah Prange, Sokrates Pantelides, Stephen Pennycook and Idrobo.

This research was supported by National Science Foundation and the DOE Office of Science. Researchers also made use of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Shared Research Equipment User Facility along with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center, both of which are also supported by DOE's Office of Science.

####

About DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy's Office of Science. DOE's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Jennifer Brouner

865-241-9515

Copyright © DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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 News Press

News and information

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

Liquipel Debuts Eyesight-Saving ION-Glass Blue Light Protection for iPhones and Androids at RadioShack Stores Nationwide: Liquipel's Unique Protective Screen, Available at RadioShack, Cuts Harmful Blue Light Implicated in Macular Degeneration by 10x July 28th, 2015

Nanophase to present paper on slurry pH impact at Optics + Photonics conference July 28th, 2015

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

Liquipel Debuts Eyesight-Saving ION-Glass Blue Light Protection for iPhones and Androids at RadioShack Stores Nationwide: Liquipel's Unique Protective Screen, Available at RadioShack, Cuts Harmful Blue Light Implicated in Macular Degeneration by 10x July 28th, 2015

Laboratories

New computer model could explain how simple molecules took first step toward life: Two Brookhaven researchers developed theoretical model to explain the origins of self-replicating molecules July 28th, 2015

Ultra-thin hollow nanocages could reduce platinum use in fuel cell electrodes July 24th, 2015

ORNL researchers make scalable arrays of 'building blocks' for ultrathin electronics July 22nd, 2015

Graphene

Stretching the limits on conducting wires July 25th, 2015

More efficient process to produce graphene developed by Ben-Gurion University researchers July 23rd, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

New computer model could explain how simple molecules took first step toward life: Two Brookhaven researchers developed theoretical model to explain the origins of self-replicating molecules July 28th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

Researchers predict material with record-setting melting point July 27th, 2015

Reshaping the solar spectrum to turn light to electricity: UC Riverside researchers find a way to use the infrared region of the sun's spectrum to make solar cells more efficient July 27th, 2015

Chip Technology

Nanometrics Announces Upcoming Investor Events July 28th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

Quantum networks: Back and forth are not equal distances! July 28th, 2015

Superfast fluorescence sets new speed record: Plasmonic device has speed and efficiency to serve optical computers July 27th, 2015

Discoveries

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

New computer model could explain how simple molecules took first step toward life: Two Brookhaven researchers developed theoretical model to explain the origins of self-replicating molecules July 28th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

'Seeing' molecular interactions could give boost to organic electronics July 28th, 2015

Materials/Metamaterials

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

Liquipel Debuts Eyesight-Saving ION-Glass Blue Light Protection for iPhones and Androids at RadioShack Stores Nationwide: Liquipel's Unique Protective Screen, Available at RadioShack, Cuts Harmful Blue Light Implicated in Macular Degeneration by 10x July 28th, 2015

Perfect Optical Properties in Production of Aluminum Oxide Colloid Nanoparticles July 28th, 2015

Quantum networks: Back and forth are not equal distances! July 28th, 2015

Announcements

Controlling phase changes in solids: Controlling phase changes in solids July 29th, 2015

Perfect Optical Properties in Production of Aluminum Oxide Colloid Nanoparticles July 28th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

'Seeing' molecular interactions could give boost to organic electronics July 28th, 2015

Automotive/Transportation

Ultra-thin hollow nanocages could reduce platinum use in fuel cell electrodes July 24th, 2015

Researchers boost wireless power transfer with magnetic field enhancement July 23rd, 2015

Molecular fuel cell catalysts hold promise for efficient energy storage July 16th, 2015

Nanocomposites Improve Tire Properties July 9th, 2015

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