Apolymer-free technique for generating nanopatterns on both synthesized and exfoliated graphene sheets is proposed and demonstrated. A low-energy (5-30 keV) scanning electron beam with variable repetition rates is used to etch suspended and unsuspended graphene sheets on designed locations. The patterning mechanisms involve a defect-induced knockout process in the initial etching stage and a heatinduced curling process in a later stage. Rough pattern edges appear due to inevitable stochastic knockout of carbon atoms or graphene structure imperfection and can be smoothed by thermal annealing. By using this technique, the minimum feature sizes achieved are about 5 nm for suspended and 7 nm for unsuspended graphene. This study demonstrates a polymer-free direct nanopatterning approach for graphene.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)