Exceptionally large migration length of carbon and topographically-facilitated self-limiting molecular beam epitaxial growth of graphene on hexagonal boron nitride
Fernandes dos Santos, L
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Reason for embargo
We demonstrate growth of single-layer graphene (SLG) on hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE), only limited in area by the finite size of the h-BN flakes. Using atomic force microscopy and micro-Raman spectroscopy, we show that for growth over a wide range of temperatures (500◦C – 1000◦C) the deposited carbon atoms spill off the edge of the h-BN flakes. We attribute this spillage to the very high mobility of the carbon atoms on the BN basal plane, consistent with van der Waals MBE. The h-BN flakes vary in size from 30 µm to 100 µm, thus demonstrating that the migration length of carbon atoms on h-BN is greater than 100 µm. When sufficient carbon is supplied to compensate for this loss, which is largely due to this fast migration of the carbon atoms to and off the edges of the h-BN flake, we find that the best growth temperature for MBE SLG on h-BN is ∼950◦C. Self-limiting graphene growth appears to be facilitated by topographic h-BN surface features: We have thereby grown MBE self-limited SLG on an h-BN ridge. This opens up future avenues for precisely tailored fabrication of nano- and hetero-structures on pre-patterned h-BN surfaces for device applications.
This work is supported by ONR (N000140610138 and Graphene MURI), AFOSR (FA9550-11-1-0010), EFRC Center for Re-Defining Photovoltaic Efficiency through Molecule Scale Control (award DE-SC0001085), NSF (CHE-0641523), NYSTAR and Spanish Government (AIC-B-2011-0806, MAT2014-54231, MAT2015-67021-R). S.W. and A.P. were supported by the US Department of Energy Office of Science, Division of Materials Science and Engineering (award DE-SC0010695).
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from the publisher via the DOI in this record.
Available online 18 December 2016
Vol. 114, pp. 579 - 584