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Revealing the 1 nm/s extensibility of nanoscale amorphous carbon in a scanning electron microscope

Authors

  • Wei Zhang

    Corresponding author
    1. High Voltage Electron Microscopy Station, National Institute for Materials Science, Tsukuba, Japan
    • Department of Energy Conversion and Storage, Technical University of Denmark, Roskilde, Denmark
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Address for reprints: Wei Zhang, Department of Energy Conversion and Storage, Technical University of Denmark, Roskilde 4000, Denmark. E-mail: wzha@dtu.dk; phdweizhang@gmail.com

Summary

In an ultra-high vacuum scanning electron microscope, the edged branches of amorphous carbon film (∼10 nm thickness) can be continuously extended with an eye-identifying speed (on the order of ∼1 nm/s) under electron beam. Such unusual mobility of amorphous carbon may be associated with deformation promoted by the electric field, which resulted from an inner secondary electron potential difference from the main trunk of carbon film to the tip end of branches under electron beam. This result demonstrates importance of applying electrical effects to modify properties of carbon materials. It may have positive implications to explore some amorphous carbon as electron field emission device. SCANNING 35: 261-264, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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