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Graphene, a form of pure carbon arranged in a lattice just one atom thick, has interested countless researchers with its unique strength and its electrical and thermal conductivity. But one key property it lacks — which would make it suitable for a plethora of new uses — is the ability to form a band gap, needed for devices such as transistors, computer chips and solar cells.

Now, a team of MIT scientists has found a way to produce graphene in significant quantities in a two- or three-layer form. When the layers are arranged just right, these structures give graphene the much-desired band gap — an energy range that falls between the bands, or energy levels, where electrons can exist in a given material.

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Category: Science