Evaluation of mechanical properties of triple-junction-free polycrystalline graphene

J Heo and J Han, NANOTECHNOLOGY, 34, 415704 (2023).

DOI: 10.1088/1361-6528/ace44e

Although chemical vapor deposition (CVD) has emerged as an important method for producing large-scale and relatively high-quality graphene, CVD-grown graphene inherently contains grain boundaries (GBs), which degrade its mechanical properties. To compensate for these characteristics, various studies have been conducted to maintain the mechanically superior properties by controlling the density of defects and GBs. In this study, the mechanical properties of triple junction (TJ)-free polycrystalline graphene, which is expected to exhibit excellent properties, were investigated through molecular dynamics simulations because TJ is well-known as a crack nucleation site due to stress concentration. We adopted the phase-field crystal method to model CVD-grown graphene-containing TJ-free polycrystalline materials. From a series of numerical simulations, we found that the fracture strength increases as the density of the GB increases. This trend is consistent with that presented in a previous experimental study measured by nanoindentation. It was determined that the variation in the fracture strength is related to the discontinuous density of 5-7 pairs, which act as stress-concentration sites. Additionally, we observed that the fracture strength was higher than that of polycrystalline graphene with TJ. We believe that these results have a higher mechanical advantage compared to the low strength of TJs shown in previous studies and will be important for future structural reliability-based graphene applications.

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