Thermal stability study of nitrogen functionalities in a graphene network

A Kumar, A Ganguly, P Papakonstantinou

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Catalyst-free vertically aligned graphene nanoflakes possessing a large amount of high density edge planes were functionalized using nitrogen species in a low energy N+ ion bombardment process to achieve pyridinic, cyanide and nitrogen substitution in hexagonal graphitic coordinated units. The evolution of the electronic structure of the functionalized graphene nanoflakes over the temperature range 20–800 ◦C was investigated in situ, using high resolution x-ray photoemission spectroscopy. We demonstrate that low energy irradiation is a useful tool for achieving nitrogen doping levels up to 9.6 at.%. Pyridinic configurations are found to be predominant at room temperature, while at 800 ◦C graphitic nitrogen configurations become the dominant ones. The findings have helped to provide anunderstanding of the thermal stability of nitrogen functionalities in graphene, and offerprospects for controllable tuning of nitrogen doping in device applications
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235503-6pages
JournalJournal of Physics: Condensed Matter
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 11 May 2012


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