Recent Progress and Challenges in Graphene Nanoribbon Synthesis



Graphene, the thinnest two-dimensional material in nature, has abundant distinctive properties, such as ultrahigh carrier mobility, superior thermal conductivity, very high surface-to-volume ratio, anomalous quantum Hall effect, and so on. Laterally confined, thin, and long strips of graphene, namely, graphene nanoribbons (GNRs), can open the bandgap in the semimetal and give it the potential to replace silicon in future electronics. Great efforts are devoted to achieving high-quality GNRs with narrow widths and smooth edges. This minireview reports the latest progress in experimental and theoretical studies on GNR synthesis. Different methods of GNR synthesis—unzipping of carbon nanotubes (CNTs), cutting of graphene, and the direct synthesis of GNRs—are discussed, and their advantages and disadvantages are compared in detail. Current challenges and the prospects in this rapidly developing field are also addressed.