Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is the most common way of producing graphene and is performed in many ways throughout the world. Growing graphene directly into electronic devices is a highly desirable process, but has been difficult to perform due to high process temperatures (of around 1000 °C) damaging the substrate components.
A team of Researchers from Japan have created a new CVD approach to grow graphene at temperatures as low as 50 °C using a dilute methane vapor source and a molten gallium catalyst.
Reducing the temperature in graphene chemical vapor deposition (CVD) synthesis methods is a particularly crucial challenge for electronic applications, especially for the direct integration of CVD-grown graphene into electronic devices.
In silicon-based electronics, the upper temperature threshold that the components can withstand upon graphene integration is around 400 °C. The threshold is even lower for plastic semiconducting devices, which can only withstand up to 100 °C during the graphene growing process. Under traditional conditions, graphene growth occurs at around 1000 °C and has not been suitable for the direct integration into such electronic devices.
That could well change though, as a team of Researchers from Japan have grown CVD-graphene onto sapphire and polycarbonate substrates with the help of a molten gallium catalyst and dilute methane atmosphere. The gallium catalyst was chosen as it was a proven catalyst in recent graphene growth methods and can be easily removed by a gas jet after the graphene has been synthesized. The methane was diluted to 5% by mixing the atmospheric gas with a nitrogen and argon mixture.
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Source: AZO NANO