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Chin. Phys. B, 2015, Vol. 24(3): 036802    DOI: 10.1088/1674-1056/24/3/036802

Water-assisted highly enhanced crystallographic etching of graphene by iron catalysts

Xue Lei-Jianga, Yu Fangb, Zhou Hai-Qingb, Sun Lian-Fengb
a College of Computer Science and Technology, Shandong University of Technology, Zibo 255049, China;
b National Centre for Nanoscience and Technology, Beijing 100190, China

We report the assisted role of water vapor in crystallographic cutting of graphene via iron catalysts in reduced atmosphere. Without water, graphene can be tailored with smooth trenches composed of straight lines with angles of 60° or 120° between two adjacent trenches. After the addition of water, new chacteristics are found: such as almost no iron particles can be detected along the trenches; each trench becomes longer and lots of graphene nanoribbons can be generated. The underlying mechanism is proposed and discussed, which is attributed to stimulating and lengthening of the catalytic activity of iron particles by water vapor.

Keywords:  graphene      Raman spectra      iron catalysts  
Received:  28 September 2014      Revised:  29 October 2014      Accepted manuscript online: 
PACS:  68.65.Pq (Graphene films)  
  78.30.-j (Infrared and Raman spectra)  
  81.65.Cf (Surface cleaning, etching, patterning)  

Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 10774032) and the Instrument Developing Project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. Y2010031).

Corresponding Authors:  Zhou Hai-Qing, Sun Lian-Feng     E-mail:;

Cite this article: 

Xue Lei-Jiang, Yu Fang, Zhou Hai-Qing, Sun Lian-Feng Water-assisted highly enhanced crystallographic etching of graphene by iron catalysts 2015 Chin. Phys. B 24 036802

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