Graphene by solid-state decomposition of SiC


Graphene is a single atomic layer sheet of graphite.It is sp2 bonded carbon in a hexagonal lattice. It displays a field effect, leading to both electron and hole doping, with mobilities exceeding 1000cm²/Vs at room temperature, making it attractive for low power post-CMOS logic applications. In addition, graphene is planar, allowing it to be fabricated at nanoscale dimensions, potentially allowing several of the favorable properties of carbon nanotubes (CNT’s) to be emulated through quantum confinement effects. However, until recently, it has been difficult to produce large areas of thin, high quality graphene layers.

Graphene can be produced by solid-state decomposition of the SiC surface >1000°C in vacuum or inert ambients. The Si atoms at the surface sublime, leaving behind graphitic carbon. This graphite is unstrained, adopting the lattice constants and electronic behavior of bulk graphite/graphene.

Schematic illustrating the formation of graphite on SiC.

Nanorystalline Graphite on SiC

We have produced graphitic material on SiC substrates using this method and have demonstrated its sensitivity to water, acetone and NO2 gas. Mobilities as high as 300cm2/Vs were obtained over a 5mmx5mm sample.


MVS Chandrashekhar, Cornell

Shriram Shivaraman, Cornell

Muhammad Qazi, South Carolina

Goutam Koley, South Carolina

Mike Spencer, Cornell

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