One of the biggest advantages of on-surface synthesis with respect to top-down approaches lies in the capability to realize atomically precise nanostructures. The ICN2 Atomic Manipulation and Spectroscopy Group, led by ICREA Prof. Aitor Mugarza, has recently published influential articles in this field including a major milestone in graphene research published in Science that made uniformly nanoporous graphene a practicable reality. This breakthrough rapidly became a patent request with high commercial potential.
A new research about on-surface synthesis of superlattice arrays of ultra-long graphene nanoribbons has been highlighted in the back cover of Chemical Communications, with Dr. César Moreno as its first author. This work is part of a broader collaboration with Prof. Diego Peña from the CiQUS research centre at the University of Santiago de Compostela (USC).
The authors explain that very few studies focus on the control of length and spatial distribution on the surface during the synthesis of graphene nanoribbons. That is surprising considering that the realization of superlattices with tunable spacings are of great interest for electronic and optoelectronic applications. Their latest work reports the capability of forming superlattices of decoupled graphene nanoribbons of an exceptional length that goes up to 200 nm, where the pitch can be tuned to different discrete values that range from 2 to 8 nm.
Cesar Moreno, Markos Paradinas, Manuel Vilas-Varela, Mirko Panighel, Gustavo Ceballos, Diego Peña and Aitor Mugarza. On-surface synthesis of superlattice arrays of ultra-long graphene nanoribbons. Chemical Communications. Issue 68, 2018.