Dr. Josh Hihath
Prof. Lisa Ainsworth
About the Event
Nanoscale Manufacturing: Can We Make Reliable Single-Molecule Devices?
At inception, molecular-scale electronics were promoted as a potential endgame for Moore’s Law. However, as time has progressed, the unique functionality that emerges when molecular systems are integrated into an electronic circuit has opened an array of new opportunities beyond transistors and diodes. These include chemical and biological sensing systems, electromechanical devices, piezoelectric and thermoelectric materials, and even systems that yield unique quantum functionality. But, despite these possibilities, one of the major issues that arose in the nascent days of molecular electronics still lingers and limits its utility. That issue is integration. Despite a plethora of unique devices, and novel chemical and physical properties, it has remained difficult to integrate these materials into a larger-scale system in a way that is reliable, reproducible, and manufacturable.
In this talk we will discuss several emerging approaches aimed at moving molecular-scale electronic systems from the lab and into applications. To integrate top-down lithographic approaches with bottom-up self-assembly methods we utilize novel micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) that allow robust single-molecule electrical measurements at the chip-level; the programmability imparted by DNA nanotechnology to create novel nanoscale electrical and lithographic systems; and finally the utility of metallic carbon nanotubes to make secure and robust contact to a single-molecule to allow facile integrate with traditional photolithographic processes.