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Zeller, Patrick; Weinl, Michael; Speck, Florian; Ostler, Markus; Henss, Ann-Kathrin; Seyller, Thomas; Schreck, Matthias; Wintterlin, Joost (2017): Single Crystalline Metal Films as Substrates for Graphene Growth. In: Annalen der Physik, Vol. 529, No. 11, 1700023
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Single crystalline metal films deposited on YSZ-buffered Si(111) wafers were investigated with respect to their suitability as substrates for epitaxial graphene. Graphene was grown by CVD of ethylene on Ru(0001), Ir(111), and Ni(111) films in UHV. For analysis a variety of surface science methods were used. By an initial annealing step the surface quality of the films was strongly improved. The temperature treatments of the metal films caused a pattern of slip lines, formed by thermal stress in the films, which, however, did not affect the graphene quality and even prevented wrinkle formation. Graphene was successfully grown on all three types of metal films in a quality comparable to graphene grown on bulk single crystals of the same metals. In the case of the Ni(111) films the originally obtained domain structure of rotational graphene phases could be transformed into a single domain by annealing. This healing process is based on the control of the equilibrium between graphene and dissolved carbon in the film. For the system graphene/Ni(111) the metal, after graphene growth, could be removed from underneath the epitaxial graphene layer by a pure gas phase reaction, using the reaction of CO with Ni to give gaseous Ni(CO)(4).