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Title: Self-assembly of ordered graphene nanodot arrays

Our ability to fabricate nanoscale domains of uniform size in two-dimensional materials could potentially enable new applications in nanoelectronics and the development of innovative metamaterials. But, achieving even minimal control over the growth of two-dimensional lateral heterostructures at such extreme dimensions has proven exceptionally challenging. Here we show the spontaneous formation of ordered arrays of graphene nano-domains (dots), epitaxially embedded in a two-dimensional boron–carbon–nitrogen alloy. These dots exhibit a strikingly uniform size of 1.6 ± 0.2 nm and strong ordering, and the array periodicity can be tuned by adjusting the growth conditions. Furthemore, we explain this behaviour with a model incorporating dot-boundary energy, a moiré-modulated substrate interaction and a long-range repulsion between dots. This new two-dimensional material, which theory predicts to be an ordered composite of uniform-size semiconducting graphene quantum dots laterally integrated within a larger-bandgap matrix, holds promise for novel electronic and optoelectronic properties, with a variety of potential device applications.
ORCiD logo [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ; ORCiD logo [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [4] ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Technical Univ. of Denmark, Lyngby (Denmark). Center for Nanostructured Graphene
  2. Aarhus Univ. (Denmark). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy and Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center iNANO
  3. T.J. Watson Research Center, New York, NY (United States). IBM Research Division
  4. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States). Center for Functional Nanomaterials
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723; R&D Project: 16083/16083; KC0403020
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; molecular self-assembly; quantum dots; synthesis of graphene; two-dimensional materials
OSTI Identifier: