The thermal decomposition of graphene oxide (GO) is a complex process at the atomic level and not fully understood. Here, a subclass of GO, oxo-functionalized graphene (oxo-G), was used to study its thermal disproportionation. We present the impact of annealing on the electronic properties of a monolayer oxo-G flake and correlated the chemical composition and topography corrugation by two-probe transport measurements, XPS, TEM, FTIR and STM. Surprisingly, we found that oxo-G, processed at 300 °C, displays C−C sp3-patches and possibly C−O−C bonds, next to graphene domains and holes. It is striking that those C−O−C/C−C sp3-separated sp2-patches a few nanometers in diameter possess semiconducting properties with a band gap of about 0.4 eV. We propose that sp3-patches confine conjugated sp2-C atoms, which leads to the local semiconductor properties. Accordingly, graphene with sp3-C in double layer areas is a potential class of semiconductors and a potential target for future chemical modifications.
- electrical transport properties
- graphene oxide
- oxo-functionalized graphene