Kansas State University researchers have come closer to solving an old challenge of producing graphene quantum dots of controlled shape and size at large densities, which could revolutionize electronics and optoelectronics.
Vikas Berry, William H. Honstead professor of chemical engineering, has developed a novel process that uses a diamond knife to cleave graphite into graphite nanoblocks, which are precursors for graphene quantum dots. These nanoblocks are then exfoliated to produce ultrasmall sheets of carbon atoms of controlled shape and size.
By controlling the size and shape, the researchers can control graphene’s properties over a wide range for varied applications, such as solar cells, electronics, optical dyes, biomarkers, composites and particulate systems. Their work has been published in Nature Communications and supports the university's vision to become a top 50 public research university by 2025. The article is available online.
"The process produces large quantities of graphene quantum dots of controlled shape and size and we have conducted studies on their structural and electrical properties," Berry said.
Other collaborators on this work include Zhiping Xu from Tsinghua University in China and David Moore from the University of Kansas. Xu conducted the molecular dynamics simulations. The co-authors from Kansas State University include Nihar Mohanty, 2011 doctoral graduate; T. S. Sreeprasad, postdoctoral fellow; Alfredo A. Rodriguez, 2012 graduate; and Ashvin Nagaraja, 2009 graduate.
The project was funded by the National Science Foundation and the office of naval research.
Berry earned his bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, India, in 1999. He received his master's degree in chemical and petroleum engineering from the University of Kansas in 2003, followed by his doctorate in chemical engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 2006.
Contact: Vikas Berry email@example.com 785-532-5519 Kansas State University