Direct mapping of electronic orbitals in graphene using electron energy-loss spectroscopy

M. Bugnet, M. Ederer, V. K. Lazarov, L. Li, Q. M. Ramasse, S. Löffler, D. M. Kepaptsoglou

Research output: Working paperPreprint


The spatial distributions of anti-bonding $\pi^\ast$ and $\sigma^\ast$ states in epitaxial graphene multilayers are mapped using electron energy-loss spectroscopy in a scanning transmission electron microscope. Inelastic channeling simulations validate the interpretation of the spatially-resolved signals in terms of electronic orbitals, and demonstrate the crucial effect of the material thickness on the experimental capability to resolve the distribution of unoccupied states. This work illustrates the current potential of core-level electron energy-loss spectroscopy towards the direct visualization of electronic orbitals in a wide range of materials, of huge interest to better understand chemical bonding among many other properties at interfaces and defects in solids.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jul 2021


  • cond-mat.mtrl-sci
  • cond-mat.mes-hall

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