Nature Communications

Direct experimental observation of stacking fault scattering in highly oriented pyrolytic graphite meso-structures

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Stacking fault defects are thought to be the root cause for many of the anomalous transport phenomena seen in high-quality graphite samples. In stark contrast to their importance, direct observation of stacking faults by diffractive techniques has remained elusive due to fundamental experimental difficulties. Here we show that the stacking fault density and resistance can be measured by analyzing the non-Gaussian scatter observed in the c-axis resistivity of mesoscopic graphite structures. We also show that the deviation from Ohmic conduction seen at high electrical field strength can be fit to a thermally activated transport model, which accurately reproduces the stacking fault density inferred from the statistical analysis. From our measurements, we conclude that the c-axis resistivity is entirely determined by the stacking fault resistance, which is orders of magnitude larger than the inter-layer resistance expected from a Drude model.


16 Dec 2014


Nature Communications