Nanomechanics of graphene oxide-bacteriophage based self-assembled porous composites

Y. Sun, P. Passaretti, I. Hernandez, J. Gonzalez, W. Liu, F. Rodriguez, D.J. Dunstan, P. Goldberg Oppenheimer, C.J. Humphreys

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Graphene oxide, integrated with the filamentous bacteriophage M13, forms a 3D large-scale multifunctional porous structure by self-assembly, with considerable potential for applications. We performed Raman spectroscopy under pressure on this porous composite to understand its fundamental mechanics. The results show that at low applied pressure, the sp 2 bonds of graphene oxide stiffen very little with increasing pressure, suggesting a complicated behaviour of water intercalated between the graphene layers. The key message of this paper is that water in a confined space can have a significant impact on the nanostructure that hosts it. We introduced carbon nanotubes during the self-assembly of graphene oxide and M13, and a similar porous macro-structure was observed. However, in the presence of carbon nanotubes, pressure is transmitted to the sp 2 bonds of graphene oxide straightforwardly as in graphite. The electrical conductivity of the composite containing carbon nanotubes is improved by about 30 times at a bias voltage of 10 V. This observation suggests that the porous structure has potential in applications where good electrical conductivity is desired, such as sensors and batteries.

Original languageEnglish
Article number15618
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 24 Sept 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Y.W.S and C.J.H gratefully acknowledge the financial support from Innovate UK.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, The Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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