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Analyzing Dirac Cone and Phonon Dispersion in Highly Oriented Nanocrystalline Graphene

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journal contribution
posted on 26.01.2016 by Chang Tai Nai, Hai Xu, Sherman J. R. Tan, Kian Ping Loh
Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is one of the most promising growth techniques to scale up the production of monolayer graphene. At present, there are intense efforts to control the orientation of graphene grains during CVD, motivated by the fact that there is a higher probability for oriented grains to achieve seamless merging, forming a large single crystal. However, it is still challenging to produce single-crystal graphene with no grain boundaries over macroscopic length scales, especially when the nucleation density of graphene nuclei is high. Nonetheless, nanocrystalline graphene with highly oriented grains may exhibit single-crystal-like properties. Herein, we investigate the spectroscopic signatures of graphene film containing highly oriented, nanosized grains (20–150 nm) using angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES) and high-resolution electron energy loss spectroscopy (HREELS). The robustness of the Dirac cone, as well as dispersion of its phonons, as a function of graphene’s grain size and before and after film coalescence, was investigated. In view of the sensitivity of atomically thin graphene to atmospheric adsorbates and intercalants, ARPES and HREELS were also used to monitor the changes in spectroscopic signatures of the graphene film following exposure to the ambient atmosphere.