Graphene has received tremendous interest in both chemical and physical fields. Among different edges of the graphene system, the zigzag edge terminated graphene nanoribbons (ZGNRs) show unique magnetic properties in the antiferromagnetic (AFM) state. However, to date, the understanding of ZGNR chemical properties is mainly based on the partial radical concept, and in previous studies, the energy differences between the ferromagnetic (FM) and AFM states are smaller than experimental evidence. Here, we report that the strongly constrained and appropriately normed functional gives a significantly larger energy difference, which matches the experimental observation. Furthermore, utilizing the energetics in the large difference case, we propose a conceptual supplement to the previous partial radical concept: the overall stabilization of the AFM state compared to the nonmagnetic (NM) state consists of two parts that affect the adsorption energy conversely. The NM-FM energy differences will strengthen the adsorption, being in line with the previous partial radical concept. The FM-AFM energy differences will instead weaken the adsorption. We perform calculations of H, OH, and LiS radical adsorption energies on ZGNRs to show that this weakening effect is numerically non-negligible: at least a ∼0.2 eV difference in the adsorption energies is found. We expect that this refinement of the partial radical concept can provide a more comprehensive understanding of the chemical properties of ZGNRs. The differences in adsorption energies for the H, OH, and LiS radicals found here lead to significant changes in the predicted reactivity of the ZGNR models.
Revisiting the link between magnetic properties and chemisorption at graphene nanoribbon zigzag edge
Note: This paper is part of the JCP Special Topic on Beyond GGA Total Energies for Solids and Surfaces.
Ziyang Wei, Philippe Sautet; Revisiting the link between magnetic properties and chemisorption at graphene nanoribbon zigzag edge. J. Chem. Phys. 28 January 2022; 156 (4): 044706. https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0079064
Download citation file: