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Title: Insulator-protected mechanically controlled break junctions for measuring single-molecule conductance in aqueous environments

Abstract

We present a method to fabricate insulated gold mechanically controlled break junctions (MCBJ) by coating the metal with a thin layer of aluminum oxide using plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition. The Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} thickness deposited on the MCBJ devices was varied from 2 to 15 nm to test the suppression of leakage currents in deionized water and phosphate buffered saline. Junctions coated with a 15 nm thick oxide layer yielded atomically sharp electrodes and negligible conductance counts in the range of 1 to 10{sup −4} G{sub 0} (1 G{sub 0} = 77 μS), where single-molecule conductances are commonly observed. The insulated devices were used to measure the conductance of an amphiphilic oligophenylene ethynylene derivative in deionized water.

Authors:
;  [1]; ; ; ;  [2]
  1. Kavli Institute of Nanoscience, Delft University of Technology, Lorentzweg 1, 2628 CJ Delft (Netherlands)
  2. Department of Chemical Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Van der Maasweg 9, 2629 HZ Delft (Netherlands)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22590633
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Applied Physics Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 109; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: (c) 2016 Author(s); Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Journal ID: ISSN 0003-6951
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; ALUMINIUM; ALUMINIUM OXIDES; BUFFERS; DEPOSITION; ELECTRIC CONTACTS; GOLD; LAYERS; LEAKAGE CURRENT; OLIGOPHENYLENES; PHOSPHATES; SEMICONDUCTOR JUNCTIONS; THICKNESS; THIN FILMS

Citation Formats

Muthusubramanian, N., Zant, H. S. J. van der, Galan, E., Maity, C., Eelkema, R., and Grozema, F. C. Insulator-protected mechanically controlled break junctions for measuring single-molecule conductance in aqueous environments. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4955273.
Muthusubramanian, N., Zant, H. S. J. van der, Galan, E., Maity, C., Eelkema, R., & Grozema, F. C. Insulator-protected mechanically controlled break junctions for measuring single-molecule conductance in aqueous environments. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4955273.
Muthusubramanian, N., Zant, H. S. J. van der, Galan, E., Maity, C., Eelkema, R., and Grozema, F. C. Mon . "Insulator-protected mechanically controlled break junctions for measuring single-molecule conductance in aqueous environments". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4955273.
@article{osti_22590633,
title = {Insulator-protected mechanically controlled break junctions for measuring single-molecule conductance in aqueous environments},
author = {Muthusubramanian, N. and Zant, H. S. J. van der and Galan, E. and Maity, C. and Eelkema, R. and Grozema, F. C.},
abstractNote = {We present a method to fabricate insulated gold mechanically controlled break junctions (MCBJ) by coating the metal with a thin layer of aluminum oxide using plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition. The Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} thickness deposited on the MCBJ devices was varied from 2 to 15 nm to test the suppression of leakage currents in deionized water and phosphate buffered saline. Junctions coated with a 15 nm thick oxide layer yielded atomically sharp electrodes and negligible conductance counts in the range of 1 to 10{sup −4} G{sub 0} (1 G{sub 0} = 77 μS), where single-molecule conductances are commonly observed. The insulated devices were used to measure the conductance of an amphiphilic oligophenylene ethynylene derivative in deionized water.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4955273},
journal = {Applied Physics Letters},
issn = {0003-6951},
number = 1,
volume = 109,
place = {United States},
year = {2016},
month = {7}
}