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Theses Doctoral

Putting Molecules into Molecular Electronics

Chiu, Chien-Yang

This thesis comprises eight chapters in two parts: the first part, chapters 1 to 6, details the design, synthesis, self-assembly and electrical properties of a new class of contorted polyheteroaromatic molecules, and the chapters 7 and 8 in the second part describes the design and fabrication of the first nanoscale field-effect transistor for single-molecule kinetics study.
Chapter 1 is an introductory chapter. It first introduces the concept of organic photovoltaics (OPV), including the operation principles, important parameters, device structures, and relevant studied small molecules for the active layer in OPV devices. The second part of the chapter will be an overview of single-molecule biosensors involving various techniques and some important aspects on the design and fabrication. Chapter 2 details the development of a new synthetic methodology for polyheteroaromatic compounds. As one example, contorted dibenzotetrathienocoronenes (c-DBTTC) have been efficiently synthesized in three steps with high yields (>80%). Importantly this class of molecules displays an unusual intermolecular stacking in solid state and intimate interaction with n-type materials (TCNQ and C60) due to their shape-shifting ability. Chapter 3 will describe an unusual molecular conformation in highly fluorinated contorted hexa-cata-hexabenzocoronenes (c-HBC) via the fluorine-fluorine repulsive interaction. Chapter 4 describes the self-assembly properties of a new class of materials, chalcogenide-fused c-DBTTC, investigated by grazing incidence X-ray diffraction (GIXD), fluorescence microscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). In chapter 5 a reticulated heterojunction OPV device applying c-DBTTC as the p-type active layer will be detailed. Combining the excellent self-assembly of c-DBTTC with the patterned graphene electrodes gives improved field-effect mobility in devices and will be described in chapter 6.
In chapter 7, a field-effect transistor using a carbon nanotube (CNTFET) will be introduced. DNA hybridization kinetics will be detected using this "label-free" nanoscale device that represents a breakthrough in the field of single-molecule techniques by delivering high sensitivity and bandwidth. In chapter 8, a basic scientific research concerning Debye screening in buffer solution will be demonstrated utilizing above-mentioned DNA devices. Again, this nanoscale device uses its ability of single-molecule detection to correlate Debye length with buffer concentrations and charge distances, respectively; the correlations will serve as important references for the design of nanoscale biosensors using carbon nanotubes.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Thesis Advisors
Nuckolls, Colin
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
October 26, 2017