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Excess energy and deformation along free edges of graphene nanoribbons

Rui Huang's picture

Q. Lu and R. Huang, Excess energy and deformation along free edges of graphene nanoribbons. Posted online at arXiv:0910.0912, October 2009.

Change of the bonding environment at the free edges of graphene monolayer leads to excess edge energy and edge force, depending on the edge morphology (zigzag or armchair). By using a reactive empirical bond-order potential and atomistic simulations, we show that the excess edge energy in free-standing graphene nanoribbons can be partially relaxed by both in-plane and out-of-plane deformation. The excess edge energy and edge force are calculated for graphene nanoribbons with parallel zigzag or armchair edges. Depending on the longitudinal constraint, the compressive edge force leads to either in-plane elongation of the ribbon or out-of-plane buckling deformation. In the former case, the longitudinal strain is inversely proportional to the ribbon width. In the latter case, energy minimization predicts an intrinsic wavelength for edge buckling to be 6.2 nm along the zigzag edge and 8.0 nm along the armchair edge. For graphene nanoribbons of width less than the intrinsic wavelength, interaction between the two free edges becomes significant, leading to anti-phase correlation of the buckling waves.


Rui Huang's picture

This paper has been accepted for publication in Physical Review B.

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.81.155410


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