Dislocation-Driven Deformations in Graphene

Science  13 Jul 2012:
Vol. 337, Issue 6091, pp. 209-212
DOI: 10.1126/science.1217529

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The movement of dislocations in a crystal is the key mechanism for plastic deformation in all materials. Studies of dislocations have focused on three-dimensional materials, and there is little experimental evidence regarding the dynamics of dislocations and their impact at the atomic level on the lattice structure of graphene. We studied the dynamics of dislocation pairs in graphene, recorded with single-atom sensitivity. We examined stepwise dislocation movement along the zig-zag lattice direction mediated either by a single bond rotation or through the loss of two carbon atoms. The strain fields were determined, showing how dislocations deform graphene by elongation and compression of C-C bonds, shear, and lattice rotations.

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