Graphene reknits its holes

Nano Lett. 2012 Aug 8;12(8):3936-40. doi: 10.1021/nl300985q. Epub 2012 Jul 10.


Nanoholes, etched under an electron beam at room temperature in single-layer graphene sheets as a result of their interaction with metal impurities, are shown to heal spontaneously by filling up with either nonhexagon, graphene-like, or perfect hexagon 2D structures. Scanning transmission electron microscopy was employed to capture the healing process and study atom-by-atom the regrown structure. A combination of these nanoscale etching and reknitting processes could lead to new graphene tailoring approaches.