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Borophene Synthesis Essay

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Abstract

The recent experimental discovery of borophene, the metallic 2-dimensional allotrope of boron, has sparked tremendous interest in further exploration of this unique material. The initial synthesis of borophene was accomplished on Ag substrates and serves as a quintessential example of predictive modeling to experimental realization. In this talk, we expand the phase-space of borophene synthesis to Au. Borophene synthesis was accomplished by evaporating elemental boron onto a Au(111) substrate. The synthesized borophene retains its metallic character on Au as verified with scanning tunneling spectroscopy. Most fascinating is the difference in growth dynamics on the Au(111) substrate where the reconstructed surface presents a unique energy landscape for borophene nucleation and growth. We find that the initial low-coverage growth of borophene modifies the herringbone reconstruction into a ``trigonal'' network, where the 2D boron islands are uniformly templated across the surface. Increasing coverage results in the increasing size of the templated borophene islands until they coalesce into larger sheets. The observed growth dynamics are supported by the computational modeling of boron nucleation on Au.





Rice University researchers say 2-D boron may be best for flexible electronics

Though they’re touted as ideal for electronics, two-dimensional materials like graphene may be too flat and hard to stretch to serve in flexible, wearable devices. “Wavy” borophene might be better, according to Rice University scientists.

The Rice lab of theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson and experimental collaborators observed examples of naturally undulating, metallic borophene, an atom-thick layer of boron, and suggested that transferring it onto an elastic surface would preserve the material’s stretchability along with its useful electronic properties.

Highly conductive graphene has promise for flexible electronics, Yakobson said, but it is too stiff for devices that also need to stretch, compress or even twist. But borophene deposited on a silver substrate develops nanoscale corrugations. Weakly bound to the silver, it could be moved to a flexible surface for use.

The research appears this month in the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters.

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