A group of researchers from the School of Engineering at Columbia University, led by Associate Professor of the Department of Applied Physics Latchi Venkataraman, have developed a unique technology for creating monomolecular diodes. Already the first experiments showed that they work 50 times better than all currently existing diodes.
“The creation of devices, where active elements consist of only one molecule, is an old, cherished dream of everyone working in the field of nanotechnology. Our success can be called the “Holy Grail” of molecular electronics since its creation in 1974 by Arie Aviram and Mark Ratner, ”the project manager does not hide his satisfaction.
As you know, the diode acts as an electric valve, which ensures the passage of current in one direction. With a certain change in conditions, the diode begins to work in the opposite direction. For this, it must have an asymmetric structure. Thus, to create a monomolecular diode, scientists had to create a molecule with an asymmetric structure.
In the course of experiments, they placed active molecules in an ionic solution and began to pass a current through gold electrodes of various sizes in order to establish a connection with the molecule. As a result, scientists have achieved the passage of a current of 0.1 μA through it.
Despite its uniqueness, this technology is easy to implement, which will make it indispensable in the creation of nanoscale devices.