Observation of a snap-through instability in graphene

Scott Scharfenberg, Nikhita Mansukhani, Cesar Chialvo, Richard L. Weaver, Nadya Mason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We examine the competition between adhesive and bending energies for few-layer graphene (FLG) samples placed on microscale-corrugated metallic substrates. Using atomic force microscopy, we show that the graphene undergoes a sharp snap-through transition as a function of layer thickness, where the material transitions between conforming to the substrate and lying flat on top of the substrate. By utilizing the critical snap-through thickness in an elasticity model for the FLG's bending, we extract a value for graphene-surface adhesion energy of 1.1 eV/nm 2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number021910
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 9 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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