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Point contact current–voltage measurements on individual organic semiconductor grains by conducting probe atomic force microscopy

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2 Author(s)
Kelley, Tommie W. ; Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, University of Minnesota, 421 Washington Avenue SE, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455 ; Frisbie, C.Daniel

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Conducting probe atomic force microscopy (CP-AFM) was used to make point contact current–voltage (I–V) measurements on individual microscopic grains of the organic semiconductor sexithiophene (6T). The 6T grains ranged from 1 to 6 molecules (2–14 nm) in thickness, 1–2 μm in length and width, and were deposited by thermal evaporation onto SiO2 substrates previously patterned with 200 nm wide Au wires. Au-coated AFM probes were used to image the substrates in air to identify individual 6T grains which grew in contact with a wire. The same probes were used to record the I–V characteristics of single grains. Analysis of the differential resistance as a function of probe wire separation yielded typical grain resistivities of 100 Ω cm and contact resistances of ∼100 MΩ. Over the 0–3 V range probed, the shape of the I–V curves can be attributed to a combination of the nonlinear I–V characteristics of the Au-6T junctions and the ohmic response of the grain. In general, we have shown that CP-AFM is a reliable method for correlating electrical transport properties with microscopic morphology in organic semiconductors. © 2000 American Vacuum Society.

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Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures  (Volume:18 ,  Issue: 2 )