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The role of contaminations in ion beam spectroscopy with freestanding 2D materials: A study on thermal treatment

Niggas, A.; Schwestka, J.; Creutzburg, S.; Gupta, T.; Eder, D.; Bayer, B. C.; Aumayr, F.; Wilhelm, R. A.

As surface-only materials, freestanding 2D materials are known to have a high level of contamination—mostly in the form of hydrocarbons, water, and residuals from production and exfoliation. For well-designed experiments, it is of particular importance to develop effective clean- ing procedures, especially since standard surface science techniques are typically not applicable. We perform ion spectroscopy with highly charged ions transmitted through freestanding atomically thin materials and present two techniques to achieve clean samples, both based on thermal treatment. Ion charge exchange and energy loss are used to analyze the degree of sample contamination. We find that even after cleaning, heavily contaminated spots remain on single layer graphene. The contamination coverage, however, clusters in strand-like structures leaving large clean areas. We present a way to discriminate clean from contaminated areas with our ion beam spectroscopy if the heterogeneity of the surface is increased sufficiently enough. We expect a similar discrimination to be necessary in most other experimental techniques.

Permalink: https://www.hzdr.de/publications/Publ-31391
Publ.-Id: 31391