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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2011, Article ID 932350, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/932350
Research Article

Structural and Electronic Properties of Low-Dimensional C-Nanoassemblies and Possible Analogues for Si (and Ge)

N. H. March1,2,3 and A. Rubio4

1DIPC, San Sebastian, Donosita-San Sebastian, 20078 Gipuzkoa, Spain
2Department of Physics, University of Antwerp, 2000 Antwerpen, Belgium
3Oxford University, Oxford, OX 12JD, UK
4Nano-Bio Spectroscopy Group and ETSF Scientific Development Centre, Depart Física de Materiales, Universidad del País Vasco, Centro de Física de Materiales CSIC-UPV/EHU-MPC and DIPC, Centro Joxe Mari Korta Avenida de Tolosa, Donostia-San Sebastian, 72, 20018 Gipuzkoa, Spain

Received 11 June 2010; Accepted 20 September 2010

Academic Editor: Teng Li

Copyright © 2011 N. H. March and A. Rubio. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The delocalised nature of -electrons in carbon-based compounds has opened a huge path for new fundamental and technological developments using carbon-based materials of different dimensionality (from clusters, to surfaces, nanotubes and graphene, among others). The success of this field has prompted the proposal that other inorganic structures based on B and N and more recently on Si and Ge could be formed with specific structural, mechanical, and electronic properties. In this paper we provide an analysis of the similarities of the two fields starting from the analysis of the Si6H6 molecule, the analogue of the benzene molecule but now being nonplanar. Then we move to the study of the two-dimensional (buckled) analogues of graphene but now formed by Si and Ge. Similarly, we look to nonplanar compounds based on boron and boron-carbon nitrogen composites. In particular, we focus on the mechanical properties of those new materials that exhibit a very high stiffness, resilience, and flexibility. Possible applications in the fields of catalysis, lubrication, electronic, and photonic devices now seem a likely by-product. We also address future directions triggered by the predicted superconducting properties of graphene, among other areas.