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Molecular layers do logic

  October 27/November 3, 2008
Come up with the right liquid crystal molecules and you're a step closer to using chemistry to make computer circuits.

Scientists have been making transistors from single-molecule-thick layers that assemble themselves for decades, but they don't work very well and they're difficult to make reliably. The new liquid-crystal-based self-assembled-monolayer field-effect transistor (SAMFET) overcomes these problems.

A 15-bit code generator made from hundreds of the transistors demonstrates the technique's potential for making self-assembled organic circuits. The technique could be used to make computer displays, sensors and other inexpensive electronic devices.

In a related development, a manufacturing method has produced 20,000 microelectronic junctions containing self-assembled monolayers. The method integrates self-assembly with traditional chip making techniques.

Research papers:
Bottom-up Organic Integrated Circuits
Nature, October 16, 2008
Upscaling, Integration and Electrical Characterization of Molecular Junctions
Nature Nanotechnology, published online October 19, 2008

Researchers' homepages:
Molecular Electronics - Physics of Organic Semiconductors, Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, University of Groningen
Simon G. J. Mathijssen
Eugenio Cantatore
Oliver Werzer
Roland Resel
Martijn Kemerink
Laboratory of Organoelement Polymer Synthesis, Institute of Synthetic Polymer Materials, Russian Academy of Sciences
Dago M. de Leeuw
Stefano Perissinotto
Guglielmo Lanzani
Jérôme Cornil

Related stories and briefs:
Simulation maps nano patterns -- related research
Molecules make short-term memory -- precursor research

Back to TRN October 27/November 3, 2008

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