The team has shown experimentally that the misorientation of grain boundaries and the introduction of wrinkles due to mechanical deformations substantially reduce the conductivity of graphene. In particular, the grain boundaries were found to be more resistive compared with the wrinkles.

The findings should help in the design of future graphene devices especially where large-area graphene films are to be implemented, such as touchscreen panels and solar-cell electrodes.

Now the researchers are busy optimizing growth conditions for making graphene via chemical vapour deposition so that grain boundaries are properly oriented to obtain superior charge transport.

Further details can be found in the journal Nanotechnology.