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About usFaculty of Science and EngineeringPhD ceremonies

Charge transport through self-assembled monolayers with eutectic gallium-indium top contacts

PhD ceremony:Mr D. Fracasso
When:February 07, 2014
Start:11:00
Supervisor:prof. dr. J.C. (Kees) Hummelen
Co-supervisor:prof. dr. R.C. (Ryan) Chiechi
Where:Academy building RUG
Faculty:Science and Engineering
Charge transport through self-assembled monolayers with eutectic
gallium-indium top contacts

In this thesis a broad overview of tunneling junctions comprising SAMs with eutectic Gallium Indium as top electrode is presented.
I at first introduce the concepts of Molecular Electronics, SAMs, tunneling junctions, and compared two techniques to measure charge transport properties, Hg-drop and EGaIn, which have their state of matter in common: being liquid at room temperature. EGaIn, despite being a relatively new technique in the world of Molecular Electronics, rapidly caught the attention of several research laboratories.
Controlling molecular conductance is an essential requirement on the road towards functional molecular electronic devices. The field of molecular electronics is generally interested in active molecular components and new functionalities. An important issue in molecular electronics is the understanding on how the molecules govern the device performance. The understanding of the electrical properties is often hidden behind the complexity of the devices architecture, in some cases the performances of the device are more important than the deeper understanding, i.e. function trumps spectroscopy. I showed in this thesis how EGaIn can be used as conformal top electrode to uncover new molecular phenomena. The goal of my research was not to develop devices for industrial application, rather to characterize SAMs electrically and correlate chemical structures to functionalities.