Growth of large-area single- and Bi-layer graphene by controlled carbon precipitation on polycrystalline Ni surfaces
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We report graphene films composed mostly of one or two layers of graphene grown by controlled carbon precipitation on the surface of polycrystalline Ni thin films during atmospheric chemical vapor deposition (CVD). Controlling both the methane concentration during CVD and the substrate cooling rate during graphene growth can significantly improve the thickness uniformity. As a result, one- or two- layer graphene regions occupy up to 87% of the film area. Single layer coverage accounts for 5%–11% of the overall film. These regions expand across multiple grain boundaries of the underlying polycrystalline Ni film. The number density of sites with multilayer graphene/graphite (>2 layers) is reduced as the cooling rate decreases. These films can also be transferred to other substrates and their sizes are only limited by the sizes of the Ni film and the CVD chamber. Here, we demonstrate the formation of films as large as 1 in2. These findings represent an important step towards the fabrication of large-scale high-quality graphene samples.