Graphene and other ultrathin materials are increasingly available to developers and researchers in a growing base of applications. This largely stems from concerted efforts to functionalize single- and few-layer materials through greater technical ingenuity. Today, manufacturers can engineer high-purity monolayer graphene via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) on a choice of growth substrates.
CVD synthesis of graphene on copper foil is increasingly common for several reasons. With extremely low carbon solubility and fairly weak catalytic action with common oxidation-assistive gases, copper substrates yield monolayer graphene growths of high quality – provided the foil is of high purity with relatively uniform topographical characteristics. As a result, copper remains one of the most promising growth substrates for CVD monolayer graphene.
One of the enduring problems of growing monolayer graphene on copper is that it leads to high volumes of copper waste. Typical transfer techniques consume the copper growth substrate, fuelling concerns about high cost and poor production sustainability.
At Grolltex, we acknowledged the outstanding potential of monolayer graphene on copper and determined to develop a solution to this transfer issue.
Introducing Metal-Assisted Exfoliation (MAE)
Metal-assisted exfoliation, or MAE for short, is a proprietary technique geared towards solving the transfer issue associated with producing graphene on copper. First, we grow the monolayer graphene on a copper foil via CVD, then we metalize the thin film using nickel or cobalt. Next, we apply a thermal release tape to the metallic thin film and exfoliate both surface structures from the copper foil. The underlying copper film can now be reused for subsequent graphene growth. Removal of the release tape is carried out via lamination with a PET film, then the metalized graphene can be placed in an etchant solution or left on the graphene for subsequent patterning finally yielding a monolayer graphene structure on a temporary PET surface.
At Grolltex, we generate monolayer graphene on copper foil substrates of just 25 micrometers in (μm) thickness. Using our patented MAE process, we can then transfer the single- or few-layer structure onto a choice of transfer substrates. We can also offer graphene on copper foil as a finished product with total coverage of no less than 95%. To ensure there is no guesswork on your part, we grow and package all our graphene products in Class 1000 cleanroom environments and carry out robust optical, electrical and Raman-based quality assurance and control (QA/QC). The result is the highest quality CVD monolayer graphene on the market. Contact us if you would like to learn more.