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Crack-junctions: Bridging the gap between nano electronics and giga manufacturing
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS), Micro and Nanosystems.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6731-3886
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Obtaining both nanometer precision of patterning and parallel fabrication on wafer-scale is currently not possible in conventional fabrication schemes. Just as we are looking beyond semiconductor technologies for next-generation electronics and photonics, our efforts turn to new ways of producing electronic and photonic interfaces with the nanoscale. Nanogap electrodes, with their accessible free-space and connection to electronic circuits, have attracted a lot of attention recently as scaffolds to study, sense, or harness the smallest stable structures found in nature: molecules. The main achievement of this thesis is the development of a novel type of nanogap electrodes, the so called crack-junction (CJ). Crack-junctions are unparalleled at realizing nanogap widths smaller than 10 nm and can be fabricated based exclusively on conventional wafer-scale microfabrication equipment and processes. These characteristics of crack-junctions stem from the sequence of two entirely self-induced steps participating in the formation of the nanogaps: 1./ a splitting step, during which a pre-strained electrode-bridge structure fractures to generate two new electrode surfaces facing one another, followed by 2./ a dividing step during which mechanical relaxation of the elastic strain induces displacement of these surfaces away from one another in a precisely controlled way. The positions of the resulting nanogaps are precisely controlled by designing the electrode-bridges with notched constrictions that localize crack formation. Based on the crack-junction methodology, two continuation concepts are developed and demonstrated. In the first concept, the crack-junction methodology is extended to electrode materials that are ductile, rather than brittle. This led to the development of a new type of break junction, the so called crack-defined break junction (CDBJ). In the second concept, the crack-defined nanogap structures realized by the crack-junction methodology are utilized as a shadow mask for the fabrication of single nanowire devices. The optical-lithography-compatible processes developed here to produce high-density arrays of individually-adjusted crack-junctions, crack-defined break junctions, and single-nanowire devices, provide viable solutions to bridge 10−9 nanoelectronics and 109 giga manufacturing.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2018. , p. 92
Series
TRITA-EECS-AVL ; 2018:42
Keywords [en]
nanotechnology, nanoelectronics, nanogap electrodes, molecular electronics, nanoplasmonics, crack-junctions, break junctions, nanowires, parallel fabrication, lithography, fracture, crack
National Category
Nano Technology
Research subject
Electrical Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-228316ISBN: 978-91-7729-795-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-228316DiVA, id: diva2:1209050
Public defence
2018-06-15, Q2, Osquldas väg 10, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20180522

Available from: 2018-05-22 Created: 2018-05-21 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Crack-defined electronic nanogaps
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Crack-defined electronic nanogaps
2016 (English)In: Advanced Materials, ISSN 0935-9648, E-ISSN 1521-4095, Vol. 28, no 11, p. 2178-2182Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Achieving near-atomic-scale electronic nanogaps in a reliable and scalable manner will facilitate fundamental advances in molecular detection, plasmonics, and nanoelectronics. Here, a method is shown for realizing crack-defined nanogaps separating TiN electrodes, allowing parallel and scalable fabrication of arrays of sub-10 nm electronic nanogaps featuring individually defined gap widths.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley-VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, 2016
Keywords
nanogap electrodes, nanogaps, electrodes, junctions, arrays, crack-junctions, tunnel junctions, tunneling, electronic transport, molecular electronics, nanoplasmonics, parallel fabrication, wafer-scale, large-scale
National Category
Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-182341 (URN)10.1002/adma.201504569 (DOI)000372459000007 ()26784270 (PubMedID)2-s2.0-84960233693 (Scopus ID)
Funder
EU, European Research Council, 267528 , 277879
Note

QC 20160304

Available from: 2016-02-18 Created: 2016-02-18 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
2. Design and fabrication of crack-junctions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Design and fabrication of crack-junctions
2017 (English)In: MICROSYSTEMS & NANOENGINEERING, ISSN 2055-7434, Vol. 3, article id UNSP 17042Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Nanogap electrodes consist of pairs of electrically conducting tips that exhibit nanoscale gaps. They are building blocks for a variety of applications in quantum electronics, nanophotonics, plasmonics, nanopore sequencing, molecular electronics, and molecular sensing. Crack-junctions (CJs) constitute a new class of nanogap electrodes that are formed by controlled fracture of suspended bridge structures fabricated in an electrically conducting thin film under residual tensile stress. Key advantages of the CJ methodology over alternative technologies are that CJs can be fabricated with wafer-scale processes, and that the width of each individual nanogap can be precisely controlled in a range from <2 to >100 nm. While the realization of CJs has been demonstrated in initial experiments, the impact of the different design parameters on the resulting CJs has not yet been studied. Here we investigate the influence of design parameters such as the dimensions and shape of the notches, the length of the electrode-bridge and the design of the anchors, on the formation and propagation of cracks and on the resulting features of the CJs. We verify that the design criteria yields accurate prediction of crack formation in electrode-bridges featuring a beam width of 280 nm and beam lengths ranging from 1 to 1.8 mu m. We further present design as well as experimental guidelines for the fabrication of CJs and propose an approach to initiate crack formation after release etching of the suspended electrode-bridge, thereby enabling the realization of CJs with pristine electrode surfaces.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017
Keywords
arrays, crack-junctions, lithography, nanofabrication, nanogap electrodes, notches, optimization, tunneling junctions
National Category
Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-217431 (URN)10.1038/micronano.2017.42 (DOI)000414166400001 ()
Note

QC 20171117

Available from: 2017-11-17 Created: 2017-11-17 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
3. Massively parallel fabrication of crack-defined gold break junctions featuring sub-3 nm electrode nanogaps
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Massively parallel fabrication of crack-defined gold break junctions featuring sub-3 nm electrode nanogaps
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-228315 (URN)
Note

QC 20180522

Available from: 2018-05-21 Created: 2018-05-21 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
4. Scalable fabrication of single nanowire devices using crack-defined shadow mask lithography
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Scalable fabrication of single nanowire devices using crack-defined shadow mask lithography
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Nano Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-228312 (URN)
Note

QC 20180522

Available from: 2018-05-21 Created: 2018-05-21 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved

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