Patterning graphene at the nanometer scale via hydrogen desorption

  • Sessi P
  • Guest J
  • Bode M
 et al. 
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We have demonstrated the reversible and local modification of the electronic properties of graphene by hydrogen passivation and subsequent electron-stimulated hydrogen desorption with an scanning tunneling microscope tip. In addition to changing the morphology, we show that the hydrogen passivation is stable at room temperature and modifies the electronic properties of graphene, opening a gap in the local density of states. This insulating state is reversed by local desorption of the hydrogen, and the unaltered electronic properties of graphene are recovered. Using this mechanism, we have "written" graphene patterns on nanometer length scales. For patterned regions that are roughly 20 nm or greater, the inherent electronic properties of graphene are completely recovered. Below 20 nm we observe dramatic variations in the electronic properties of the graphene as a function of pattern size. This reversible and local mechanism for modifying the electronic properties of graphene has far-reaching implications for nanoscale circuitry fabricated from this revolutionary material.

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  • Paolo Sessi

  • Jeffrey R. Guest

  • Matthias Bode

  • Nathan P. Guisinger

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