Charge transport-driven selective oxidation of graphene†
Due to the tunability of the physical, electrical, and optical characteristics of graphene, precisely controlling graphene oxidation is of great importance for potential applications of graphene-based electronics. Here, we demonstrate a facile and precise way for graphene oxidation controlled by photoexcited charge transfer depending on the substrate and bias voltage. It is observed that graphene on TiO2 is easily oxidized under UV–ozone treatment, while graphene on SiO2 remains unchanged. The mechanism for the selective oxidation of graphene on TiO2 is associated with charge transfer from the TiO2 to the graphene. Raman spectra were used to investigate the graphene following applied bias voltages on the graphene/TiO2 diode under UV–ozone exposure. We found that under a reverse bias of 0.6 V on the graphene/TiO2 diode, graphene oxidation was accelerated under UV–ozone exposure, thus confirming the role of charge transfer between the graphene and the TiO2 that results in the selective oxidation of the graphene. The selective oxidation of graphene can be utilized for the precise, nanoscale patterning of the graphene oxide and locally patterned chemical doping, finally leading to the feasibility and expansion of a variety of graphene-based applications.