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Zipping and unzipping of nanoscale carbon structures

By Julia Berashevich and Tapash Chakraborty


We demonstrate theoretically that hydrogenation and annealing applied to nanoscale carbon structures play a crucial role in determining the final shape of the system. In particular, graphene flakes characterized by the linear and non-hydrogenated zigzag or armchair edges have high propensity to merge into a bigger flake or a nanotube (the formation of a single carbon-carbon bond lowers the total energy of the system by up to 6.22 eV). Conversely, the line of the $sp^2$ carbon bonds (common for pure carbon structures such as graphene or a carbon nanotube) converted into the $sp^3$ type by hydrogenation shows an ability to disassemble the original structure by cutting it along the line of the modified bonds. These structural transformations provide us with an understanding of the behavior of mobile carbon structures in solution and a distinct scenario of how to preserve the original structure which would be a crucial issue for their application in carbon-based electronics.Comment: 7 pages, 6 figure

Topics: Condensed Matter - Materials Science
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1103/PhysRevB.83.195442
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