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Using polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons for graphene growth on Cu(111) under ultra-high vacuum

DOI: 10.1063/5.0122914 DOI Help

Authors: Benedikt P. Klein (Diamond Light Source; University of Warwick) , Matthew A. Stoodley (Diamond Light Source; University of Warwick) , Matthew Edmondson (University of Nottingham) , Luke A. Rochford (Diamond Light Source) , Marc Walker (University of Warwick) , Lars Sattler (Universität Oldenburg) , Sebastian Weber (Universität Oldenburg) , Gerhard Hilt (Universität Oldenburg) , Leon B. S. Williams (Diamond Light Source; University of Glasgow) , Tien-Lin Lee (Diamond Light Source) , Alex Saywell (University of Nottingham) , Reinhard J. Maurer (University of Warwick) , David A. Duncan (Diamond Light Source)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Applied Physics Letters , VOL 121

State: Published (Approved)
Published: November 2022
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 25379

Open Access Open Access

Abstract: Ultra-high vacuum deposition of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons azupyrene and pyrene onto a Cu(111) surface held at a temperature of 1000 K is herein shown to result in the formation of graphene. The presence of graphene was proven using scanning tunneling microscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and low energy electron diffraction. The precursors, azupyrene and pyrene, are comparatively large aromatic molecules in contrast to more commonly employed precursors like methane or ethylene. While the formation of the hexagonal graphene lattice could naively be expected when pyrene is used as a precursor, the situation is more complex for azupyrene. In this case, the non-alternant topology of azupyrene with only 5- and 7-membered rings must be altered to form the observed hexagonal graphene lattice. Such a rearrangement, converting a non-alternant topology into an alternant one, is in line with previous reports describing similar topological alterations, including the isomerization of molecular azupyrene to pyrene. The thermal synthesis route to graphene, presented here, is achievable at comparatively low temperatures and under ultra-high vacuum conditions, which may enable further investigations of the growth process in a strictly controlled and clean environment that is not accessible with traditional precursors.

Journal Keywords: Organic compounds; Scanning tunneling microscopy; Angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy; X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy; Electron diffraction; Ultra-high vacuum; Isomerization; Raman spectroscopy; Graphene

Subject Areas: Materials, Chemistry, Physics

Instruments: I09-Surface and Interface Structural Analysis

Added On: 16/11/2022 08:43


Discipline Tags:

Surfaces Physics Chemistry Materials Science Organic Chemistry

Technical Tags:

Spectroscopy X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS)