Poly(ethylene oxide) Functionalized Graphene Nanoribbons with Excellent Solution Processability

Yinjuan Huang, Yiyong Mai, Uliana Beser, Joan Teyssandier, Gangamallaiah Velpula, Hans Van Gorp, Lasse Arnt Straasø, Michael Ryan Hansen, Daniele Rizzo, Cinzia Casiraghi, Rong Yang, Guangyu Zhang, Dongqing Wu, Fan Zhang, Deyue Yan, Steven De Feyter, Klaus Müllen, Xinliang Feng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Structurally well-defined graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) have attracted great interest as next-generation semiconductor materials. The functionalization of GNRs with polymeric side chains, which can widely broaden GNR-related studies on physiochemical properties and potential applications, has remained unexplored. Here, we demonstrate the bottom-up solution synthesis of defect-free GNRs grafted with flexible poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO) chains. The GNR backbones possess an armchair edge structure with a width of 1.0-1.7 nm and mean lengths of 15-60 nm, enabling near-infrared absorption and a low bandgap of 1.3 eV. Remarkably, the PEO grafting renders the GNRs superb dispersibility in common organic solvents, with a record concentration of ∼1 mg mL-1 (for GNR backbone) that is much higher than that (-1) of reported GNRs. Moreover, the PEO-functionalized GNRs can be readily dispersed in water, accompanying with supramolecular helical nanowire formation. Scanning probe microscopy reveals raft-like self-assembled monolayers of uniform GNRs on graphite substrates. Thin-film-based field-effect transistors (FETs) of the GNRs exhibit a high carrier mobility of ∼0.3 cm2 V-1 s-1, manifesting promising application of the polymer-functionalized GNRs in electronic devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10136-10139
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number32
Early online date27 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2016


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