Building Structures Atom by Atom via Electron Beam Manipulation
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1002/smll.201801771
We demonstrate assembly of di-, tri- and tetrameric Si clusters on the graphene surface using sub-atomically focused electron beam of a scanning transmission electron microscope. Here, an electron beam is used to introduce Si substitutional defects and defect clusters in graphene with spatial control of a few nanometers, and enable controlled motion of Si atoms. The Si substitutional defects are then further manipulated to form dimers, trimers and more complex structures. The dynamics of a beam induced atomic scale chemical process is captured in a time-series of images at atomic resolution. These studies suggest that control of the e-beam induced local processes offers the next step toward atom-by-atom nanofabrication and provides an enabling tool for study of atomic scale chemistry in 2D materials.