Insights into the Mechanism for Vertical Graphene Growth by Plasma-Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition
Journal article, 2022

Vertically oriented graphene (VG) has attracted attention for years, but the growth mechanism is still not fully revealed. The electric field may play a role, but the direct evidence and exactly what role it plays remains unclear. Here, we conduct a systematic study and find that in plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition, the VG growth preferably occurs at spots where the local field is stronger, for example, at GaN nanowire tips. On almost round-shaped nanoparticles, instead of being perpendicular to the substrate, the VG grows along the field direction, that is, perpendicular to the particles' local surfaces. Even more convincingly, the sheath field is screened to different degrees, and a direct correlation between the field strength and the VG growth is observed. Numerical calculation suggests that during the growth, the field helps accumulate charges on graphene, which eventually changes the cohesive graphene layers into separate three-dimensional VG flakes. Furthermore, the field helps attract charged precursors to places sticking out from the substrate and makes them even sharper and turn into VG. Finally, we demonstrate that the VG-covered nanoparticles are benign to human blood leukocytes and could be considered for drug delivery. Our research may serve as a starting point for further vertical two-dimensional material growth mechanism studies.


2D materials

vertical graphene

plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition

GaN nanowires


Jie Sun

Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Quantum Device Physics

Tanupong Rattanasawatesun

Student at Chalmers

Penghao Tang

Beijing University of Technology

Zhaoxia Bi

Lund University

Santosh Pandit

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Systems and Synthetic Biology

Lisa Lam

University of Gothenburg

Caroline Wasen

University of Gothenburg

Malin Erlandsson

University of Gothenburg

Maria Bokarewa

University of Gothenburg

Jichen Dong

Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST)

Feng Ding

Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST)

Fangzhu Xiong

Beijing University of Technology

Ivan Mijakovic

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Systems and Synthetic Biology

Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces

1944-8244 (ISSN) 1944-8252 (eISSN)

Vol. 14 5 7152-7160

Subject Categories

Materials Chemistry

Other Chemistry Topics

Condensed Matter Physics





More information

Latest update

4/5/2022 5