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Graphene delamination using ‘electrochemical methods’: An ion intercalation effect


The mechanism of graphene delamination from a Pt catalyst growth surface with electrochemical methods is studied. After a water intercalation step, an electrochemical graphene delamination process is done with a variety of different electrolytes. It is shown that (hydrogen or oxygen) bubble formation is not the main driving force to decouple graphene from its catalyst growth substrate. Ion intercalation is identified as the primary component for a fast graphene delamination process from its catalytic growth surface. When the Pt/graphene sample is negatively charged, cations will intercalate, assuming they do not reduce within the electrochemical window of the solvent. This cation intercalation does result in graphene delamination. In the same way, anions are intercalating in positively charged Pt/graphene samples when they do not react within the electrochemical window of the solvent. Furthermore, it is shown that applying a potential is sufficient (current is not needed) to induce ion intercalation and, as a result, graphene delamination. These findings open the door to avoid Na+ or K+ contamination introduced during currently described electrochemical graphene delamination. Ammonium hydroxide is proposed as an alternative electrolyte, due to the absence of alkali contaminants and rapid ammonium intercalation to delaminate graphene in the absence of a flowing current.

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Publication details

The article was received on 12 Jan 2018, accepted on 13 Feb 2018 and first published on 14 Feb 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8NR00335A
Citation: Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Graphene delamination using ‘electrochemical methods’: An ion intercalation effect

    K. Verguts, J. Coroa, C. Huyghebaert, S. De Gendt and S. Brems, Nanoscale, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8NR00335A

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