Growth of layered (2D) materials has attracted great attention over the last decade due to their importance either in fundamental science as well as in technological applications. The most well-studied 2D material is graphene, owing to its remarkable and unique electronic, thermal and mechanical properties. Furthermore, as carbon atoms can have three different hybridizations, it is possible to build a large family of graphene allotropes. In order to extend the application of graphene (and its allotropes) in nanotechnology, it is necessary to develop methods to controllably build up 3D architectures exploiting the distinct characteristics of its building blocks. In this project, we intend to carry out extensive reactive molecular dynamics simulations in order to develop and build models able to mimic the structural and mechanical properties of 3D carbon-based foams (i.e. highly porous materials) using graphene, and graphenylene as building blocks. The theoretical results will be compared to the experimental ones from the Nanomaterials Laboratory at Rice University, led by Prof. Pulickel M. Ajayan. The validated models will be helpful in design new architectures of 3D carbon-based foams.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: