User Publication: Tobin Filleter Group, Fatigue of Graphene – Nature Materials

Tobin Filleter Group

Fatigue of Graphene

Nature Materials

Teng Cui, Sankha Mukherjee, Parambath M. Sudeep, Guillaume Colas, Farzin Najafi, Jason Tam, Pulickel M. Ajayan, Chandra Veer Singh, Yu Sun & Tobin Filleter


The main facilities/techniques used in this work include e-beam lithography, RIE, oxygen plasma Asher.


This paper reports the first experimental fatigue study of freestanding graphene. Freestanding graphene was prepared by exfoliation of graphite onto a SiO2/Si substrate with arrays of microfabricated circular cavities. The microcavities were fabricated by e-beam lithography patterning followed by reactive ion etching. The fatigue loading was achieved by a modified atomic force microscopy-based method to apply a combined static and cyclic force on the suspended graphene. It was discovered that graphene can survive more than one billion cycles of loading under large stress levels, e.g., 71 GPa mean stress with 5.6 GPa stress range. Fatigue failure of monolayer graphene was found to fail in a global and catastrophic manner without any obvious progressive damage, which differs from conventional fatigue mechanisms at the macroscale. Conversely, graphene oxide exhibited a localized and progressive damage behavior due to the crack-arresting mechanism of the functional groups. This work not only provides fundamental insights into the fatigue enhancement behaviour of graphene- embedded nanocomposites, but also serves as a starting point for the dynamic reliability evaluation of other 2D materials.