According to a study published today at in the New Journal of Physics, European research specialists has become one of the first groups to synthesis the 2D non material germanene .
A potential alternative to graphene as it reveals electrical and optical properties, material which is made up of a single layer of germanium atoms which means it can bring great revolution in electronics industry as well as quantum computing.
Aix-Marseille University‘s Guy Le Lay confirms graphene is not suited to digital logic applications because it has no gap, unlike silicene. Also there are claims stating germanene is a high temperature superconductor. Alike to the 2D material silicene, the proposed method for synthesizing germanene is to deposit individual germanium atoms onto a substrate under high temperatures and in an ultra-high vacuum.
Further Le lay informs the team has discovered that gold could also be used as a substrate. The material was also observed under a scanning tunneling microscope, which revealed the characteristic honeycomb structure of a 2D material. The researchers believe that with further development it may be possible for germanene to be grown on thin gold films sitting on top of a flexible substrate, which would certainly be cheaper than platinum and could allow germanene to be produce on a large scale.
Additionally, the unique properties of germanene could make it a robust two-dimensional topological insulator, particularly up to room temperature opening up the possibility of using the material in quantum computing. Stronger than diamond, as flexible as rubber and more conductive than copper, graphene caused quite a stir when it was first discovered in 2004. Consisting of just a single layer of carbon atoms, it is the thinnest material ever created and offers huge promise for a range of applications, from flexible touch screens to lighting within walls and enhanced batteries
Germanene was proposed as a substitute in 2009, but until now it took a back seat as scientists focused their energies on graphene. Now, excitement is brewing after researchers were able to develop the material on a gold surface. “The synthesis of germanene is just the very beginning of a long quest.
Indeed, success in the synthesis was not easy to achieve and quite demanding. A considerable amount of work is now needed to further characterize the electronic properties of the material.’