Process for Plasma Functionalizing of Graphene

Immersion in DI Water. A = C4F8 treated, B = O2 treated, C is Raw graphene

Executive Summary

Graphene has remained an attractive material due to its excellent intrinsic mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties. However, due to the chemically inert nature of the basal plane, significant engineering and/or chemical treatments of graphene are needed for it to be effective in a variety of applications. Researchers at Michigan State University have recently developed an efficient process to functionalize graphene using a plasma. The process is rapid, operates at atmospheric temperature and can uses no harsh chemicals. The process can be used to tailor graphene surface chemistry for a variety of important applications.


Description of the Technology

The technology is based on exposing graphene to plasma in a rotoary plasma reactor. Experiments have been conducted using octafluoracyclobutane (C4F8) and oxygen (O2) to create reactive sites (either oxygen or fluorine) on and around the basal plate of graphene nanoplatelets (GnP). Functionalized particles have been characterized by XPS, Raman microscopy, and XRD.



  • Room temperature operation
  • Low pressure
  • Short reaction times (~ 10 minutes or less)
  • Does not require hazardous chemicals or create toxic byproducts that chemical processes form
  • Can “heal” the basal structure of graphene like materials



  • Improving quality and consistency of graphene oxide products
  • Thermally conductive electrical insulators
  • Lubricants
  • Battery cathodes
  • Field effect transistors and semiconductors


Patent Status

  • Under discussion


Licensing Rights




Discover Nano Paper “Plasma modification of graphene nanoplatelets surfaces”, Nov 2023



Dr. Andre Lee, Dr. Qi Hua Fan, Dr. Tyler Johnson




Patent Information:

For Information, Contact:

Jon Debling
Technology Manager
Michigan State University