A method of forming and processing of graphene is disclosed based on exposure and selective intercalation of the partially graphene-covered metal substrate with atomic or molecular intercalation species such as oxygen (O.sub.2) and nitrogen oxide (NO.sub.2). The process of intercalation lifts the strong metal-carbon coupling and restores the characteristic Dirac behavior of isolated monolayer graphene. The interface of graphene with metals or metal-decorated substrates also provides for controlled chemical reactions based on novel functionality of the confined space between a metal surface and a graphene sheet.
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT LICENSE RIGHTS
 This invention was made with Government support under contract number DE-AC02-98CH10886, awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.