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Method for a carbon nanotube SET scanning probe electrometer

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000011434D
Publication Date: 2003-Feb-19
Document File: 4 page(s) / 72K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for a carbon nanotube single electron transistor (SET) scanning probe electrometer. Benefits include improved performance, improved functionality, improved ease of implementation, and improved ease of manufacturing.

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Method for a carbon nanotube SET scanning probe electrometer

Disclosed is a method for a carbon nanotube single electron transistor (SET) scanning probe electrometer. Benefits include improved performance, improved functionality, improved ease of implementation, and improved ease of manufacturing.

Background

      Conventionally, electric-field-sensitive atomic force microscopy (FEM) is used to detect individually charged particles. The FEM, however, requires the application of a high electrical field (106 V/cm) between the tip and the surface that may perturb the system to be detected.

A scanning SET electrometer made of metal (Al) island has been demonstrated with spatial resolution of about 100 nm and can detect ~1% of an electron charge. The electrometer does not require the application of a high electrical field between the tip and the surface. However, it requires a working temperature below 2 K.

      One conventional method is a SET prepared by evaporation of three separate areas of a thin (10 – 20 nm) aluminum film onto a specially shaped glass fiber .  The film at the end of the fiber forms the island of the SET. The two separately deposited side films work as two electrodes with their surface oxidized to form tunneling barriers with the island.

General description

      The disclosed method is a scanning probe composed of a carbon nanotube-based single-electron transistor (CNT-SET) that is used to detect a small electrical charge a on semiconductor or insulator surface.

              The key elements of the method include:

•             Scanning probe with a carbon nanotube or a nanotube array as an electrical charge sensor

•             Very small nanotube diameter (~ 1 nm)

•             Carbon nanotube or nanotube array that is connected with two electrodes on the scanning probe through an insulating layer

•             Middle segment of the tube that is electrically insulated from the other two segments that are connected directly with the electrodes

•             High or room temperature operation

Advantages

              The disclosed method provides advantages, including:

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