Growth of single-layer boron nitride dome-shaped nanostructures catalysed by iron clusters†
We report on the growth and formation of single-layer boron nitride dome-shaped nanostructures mediated by small iron clusters located on flakes of hexagonal boron nitride. The nanostructures were synthesized in situ at high temperature inside a transmission electron microscope while the e-beam was blanked. The formation process, typically originating at defective step-edges on the boron nitride support, was investigated using a combination of transmission electron microscopy, electron energy loss spectroscopy and computational modelling. Computational modelling showed that the domes exhibit a nanotube-like structure with flat circular caps and that their stability was comparable to that of a single boron nitride layer.