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Phys Rev Lett. 2009 Jul 3;103(1):016806. Epub 2009 Jul 2.

Long-range interaction between adatoms in graphene.

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Department of Physics, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112, USA.


We present a theory of electron-mediated interaction between adatoms in graphene. In the case of resonant scattering, relevant for hydrogenated graphene, a long-range 1/r interaction is found. This interaction can be viewed as a fermionic analog of the Casimir interaction, in which massless fermions play the role of photons. The interaction is an attraction or a repulsion depending on whether the adatoms reside on the same sublattice or on different sublattices, with attraction dominating for adatoms randomly distributed over both sublattices. The attractive nature of these forces creates an instability under which adatoms tend to aggregate.

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