Control over the magnetism and transition between high- and low-spin states of an adatom on trilayer graphene
Using density-functional theory, we investigate the electronic and magnetic properties of an adatom (Na, Cu and Fe) on ABA- and ABC-stacked (Bernal and rhombohedral) trilayer graphenes. In particular, we study the influence of an applied gate voltage on magnetism, as it modifies the electronic states of the trilayer graphene (TLG) as well as changes the adatom spin states. Our study performed for a choice of three different adatoms (Na, Cu, and Fe) shows that the nature of adatom–graphene bonding evolves from ionic to covalent in moving from an alkali metal (Na) to a transition metal (Cu or Fe). Applying an external electric field (EEF) to TLG systems with different stacking orders results in the transition between high- and low-spin states in the latter case (Cu, Fe) and induces a little of magnetism in the former (Na) without magnetism in the absence of an external electric field. Our study would be useful for controlled adatom magnetism and (organic) spintronic applications in nanotechnology.