D.E. García-Rodríguez, L.H. Mendoza-Huizar, C. Díaz, Applied Surface Science, 2017, 412, 146?151.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apsusc.2017.03.239
Metal nanoparticles adsorbed on graphene are systems of interest for processes relative to catalytic reactions and alternative energy production. Graphene decorated with Cu-nanoparticles, in particular, could be a good alternative material for electrodes in direct borohydride fuel cells. However our knowledge of this system is still very limited. Based on density functional theory, we have analyzed the interaction of Cun nanoparticles (n = 4, 5, 6, 7, 13) with pristine and defective-graphene. We have considered two types of defects, a single vacancy (SV), and an extended lineal structural defect (ELSD), formed by heptagon-pentagon pairs. Our analysis has revealed the covalent character of the Cun-graphene interaction for pristine- and ELSD-graphene, and a more ionic-like interaction for SV-graphene. Furthermore, our analysis shows that the interaction between the nanoparticles and the graphene is rather local, i.e., only the nanoparticle atoms close to the contact region are involved in the interaction, being the electronic contact region much higher for defective-graphene than for pristine-graphene. Thus, the higher the particle the lower its average electronic and structural distortion.