Ripples and Wrinkles in Graphene: Beyond Continuum Mechanics



Graphene and other low-dimensional materials are a fantastic playground both for fundamental and applied sciences: for the former, to reach beyond the laws of continuum mechanics and expand the realm of bulk materials and, for the latter, to unlock new potential breakthroughs in areas ranging from single-molecule sensors to hydrogen storage and water filtration.

In this review, we explore the physical origins of the unique mechanical properties of mono- and few-layer graphene. For instance, bending resistance builds up in monolayer graphene through pi-orbital misalignment but does not involve any elastic strain, in stark contrast with its bulk counterpart. In addition, thermal fluctuations and physical defects renormalize the effective mechanical behavior of graphene. We then review the various wrinkling processes observed in graphene systems, thermally activated self-tearing, thermal expansion or lattice mismatch, and adsorbate-induced spontaneous curvature, and discuss their relevance in technological applications.

The uniqueness of graphene properties presented here showcases the broad range of disciplines impacted by the (just nucleated) birth of 2D systems.


Graphene 2D materials Solid mechanics Thermal fluctuations Wrinkles Ripples NEMS Nanomechanics Continuum mechanics Nanoengineering 



We acknowledge the financial support from FONDECYT/CONICYT-Chile through the postdoctoral project N° 3160152 and from H2020 through the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship N° 750802. F.M. is grateful to FONDECYT/Anillo Act-1410. We thank P. Reis, A. Kŏsmrlj, J-C. Géminard, J. Bico, B. Roman, E. Katifori, and L. Gordillo for enlightening discussions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de FísicaUniversidad de Santiago de ChileSantiagoChile

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