Atoms use tunnels to escape graphene cover (article in Physical Review Materials by Leiden researchers Van der Molen, Jobst, and De Jong and others)


Graphene has held a great promise for applications since it was first isolated in 2004. But we still don’t use it in our large-scale technology, because we have no way of producing graphene on an industrial scale. Leiden physicists have now visualized for the first time how atoms behave in between graphene and a substrate. This insight could be instrumental for future implementations of industrial graphene production. Publication in Physical Review Materials.

In 2004, scientists managed to isolate a single layer of carbon atoms from a block of graphite. Since then, this so-called graphene layer has been praised for its high potential for all sorts of promising applications. It would enable high-speed transistors, economic electrical cars and delicate sensors. So fast-forward to 2018, graphene is now the dominant building block of our computers, cars and gadgets, right? Wrong. There are still few large-scale graphene applications. The problem is that we haven’t figured out a way to produce graphene in high quality on the right substrate on an industrial scale. Continue reading here.