domingo, 21 de marzo de 2010

Multifunctional CuO nanowire devices: p-type field effect transistors

Doping is the most common way to produce p-type materials, but it can present many obstacles such as poor stability. An alternative approach is to exploit the p-type behaviour of CuO nanowires.

Nano lab team
Researchers at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, grow high-quality CuO nanowires with high yield by heating copper foil in air. With the help of the standard UV lithography process, field effect transistors (FETs) based on individual CuO nanowires can be created.

Systematic investigations into electrical transport within the structures reveal that, without any further treatment, the as-grown CuO nanowires can perform as the channel material in p-type FET devices with mobilities of more than 2–5 cm2 V–1 s–1. The result highlights the potential of CuO nanowries to complement n-type semiconductor metal oxide nanowires in future integrated nanoelectronics.

The researchers can transfer their CuO nanowires to a standard silicon wafer with good alignment. In this way, thin-film transistors, which exhibit better performance than that of the single CuO nanowire FETs, can be readily fabricated. This study could pave the way for a large-scale manufacturing process for making high-performance p-type nanowire-based thin-film devices.

Another application that demonstrates the potential of such CuO nanowires is gas sensing. The researchers found that due to the selective adsorption of CO molecules on the surface of the nanowire, CuO could be used as a material for detecting carbon monoxide.

The group is focusing its efforts on exploring physical and biological properties of novel metal-oxide nanostructures and developing practical nanodevices.

About the author
The work was performed at the Physics and Applied Physics Division, School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Dr Lie Liao is a Singapore Millennium Foundation Research Fellow working on the metal oxide nanostructures. Bin Yan is a PhD student with an interest in probing optical and electrical properties of metal-oxide nanostructures. Dr Ting Yu, the group leader, focuses on the metal-oxide nanodevices and graphene, in particular engineering band structures of graphene and developing graphene-based materials for new energy.

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