Here we show that it is possible to intercalate CO under graphene grown on Ir(111) already at room temperature when CO pressures in the millibar regime are used. From the interplay of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and scanning tunneling microscopy we conclude that the intercalated CO adsorption structure is similar to the (3√3 × 3√3)R30°) adsorption structure that is formed on Ir(111) upon exposure to 1 mbar of CO. Further, density functional theory calculations reveal that the structural and electronic properties of CO-intercalated graphene are similar to p-doped freestanding graphene. Finally we characterize nonintercalated stripes and islands that we always observe in the CO-intercalated graphene. We observe these nonintercalated areas predominately in HCP and FCC areas near step edges and suggest that stress release in graphene is the driving force for their formation, while the weak chemical bonds in HCP and FCC areas are the reason for their area selectivity.
Journal of Physical Chemistry Part C: Nanomaterials, Interfaces and Hard Matter, 2013, Vol 117, Issue 32, p. 16438-16447