The Coalescence Behavior of Two-Dimensional Materials Revealed by Multiscale in Situ Imaging during Chemical Vapor Deposition Growth

Zhu Jun Wang, Jichen Dong, Linfei Li, Guocai Dong, Yi Cui, Yang Yang, Wei Wei, Raoul Blume, Qing Li, Li Wang, Xiaozhi Xu, Kaihui Liu, Cédric Barroo, Joost W.M. Frenken, Qiang Fu, Xinhe Bao, Robert Schlögl, Feng Ding, Marc Georg Willinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Wafer-scale monocrystalline two-dimensional (2D) materials can theoretically be grown by seamless coalescence of individual domains into a large single crystal. Here we present a concise study of the coalescence behavior of crystalline 2D films using a combination of complementary in situ methods. Direct observation of overlayer growth from the atomic to the millimeter scale and under model- and industrially relevant growth conditions reveals the influence of the film-substrate interaction on the crystallinity of the 2D film. In the case of weakly interacting substrates, the coalescence behavior is dictated by the inherent growth kinetics of the 2D film. It is shown that the merging of coaligned domains leads to a distinct modification of the growth dynamics through the formation of fast-growing high-energy edges. The latter can be traced down to a reduced kink-creation energy at the interface between well-aligned domains. In the case of strongly interacting substrates, the lattice mismatch between film and substrate induces a pronounced moiré corrugation that determines the growth and coalescence behavior. It furthermore imposes additional criteria for seamless coalescence and determines the structure of grain boundaries. The experimental findings, obtained here for the case of graphene, are confirmed by theory-based growth simulations and can be generalized to other 2D materials that show 3- or 6-fold symmetry. Based on the gained understanding of the relation between film-substrate interaction, shape evolution, and coalescence behavior, conditions for seamless coalescence and, thus, for the optimization of large-scale production of monocrystalline 2D materials are established.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1902-1918
Number of pages17
JournalACS Nano
Issue number2
StatePublished - 25 Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • 2D materials
  • chemical vapor deposition
  • complementary in situ methods
  • multiscale in situ imaging
  • pressure gap
  • seamless coalescence


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