Formation Mechanism and Cohesive Energy Analysis of Metal-coated Graphene Nanocomposites Using In-situ Co-reduction Method

Yuanlin Xue, Wenge Chen, Jiaojiao Wang, Longlong Dong, Qian Zhao, Yong Qing Fu

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7 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Nanocomposite powders based on metal-coated graphene were synthesized using an in-situ co-reduction method in order to improve wettability and interfacial bonding between graphene and metal. Graphene oxide (GO) of 2~3 atomic layers was synthesized using the Hummer’s method with graphite as a raw material, and then dispersed into a dispersing agent solution mixed with N-Methyl pyrrolidone and deionized water to form a homogeneous GO suspension, which was finally added into electroless plating solutions for the reduction process. Copper-coated graphene (Cu@graphene) and nickel-coated graphene (Ni@graphene) were synthesized using this one-step and co-reduction method by mixing salt solutions containing metal ions and GOs into the plating solution. The copper ions or nickel ions were adsorbed and bonded onto the edges and surfaces of graphene, which was reduced from the GOs using a strong reducing agent of ascorbic acid or sodium borohydride. Crystalline copper particles with an average size of about 200 nm were formed on the surface of graphene, whereas amorphous or nanocrystalline nickel particles with an average size of 55 nm were formed on the surface of graphene. Distribution of these metal particles on the graphene is homogeneous and highly dispersed, which can effectively improve the sinterability of composite powders. Cohesive energy distribution between graphene and metal interface was analyzed using first-principle calculation method. Formation mechanism of metal coated graphene was identified to be that both the GO and metal ions were simultaneously reduced in the reducing agents, and thus a strong chemical bonding of graphene/metal was formed between the metal particles and graphene.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2071
Number of pages21
JournalMaterials
Volume11
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 Oct 2018

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