The bottom-up fabrication of graphene in a self-organized manner could be a key technique for tailoring graphene geometries on demand. While uniform monolayer graphene can be obtained on a copper catalyst surface by CVD, the growth had been thought to be relatively insensitive to the morphology of the copper surface.

Now, the scientists from AIST’s Green Nanoelectronics Center, who have been investigating graphene growth on various catalyst surfaces at low pressure, have observed the self-organized formation of graphene ribbons on a copper film surface.

Each ribbon was found to form at bunched steps. This interesting phenomenon could be explained by anisotropic graphene growth accompanied by step bunching due to the suppression of step-flow-like copper evaporation underneath the graphene island.

Additional information can be found in the journal Nanotechnology.