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Sensors 2017, 17(3), 471; doi:10.3390/s17030471

The Electrostatically Formed Nanowire: A Novel Platform for Gas-Sensing Applications

1
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, POB 653, Beer-Sheva 84105, Israel
2
Ilse-Katz center for Nanotechnology, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, POB 653, Beer-Sheva 84105, Israel
Academic Editor: W. Rudolf Seitz
Received: 10 January 2017 / Revised: 6 February 2017 / Accepted: 24 February 2017 / Published: 26 February 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1864 KB, uploaded 26 February 2017]   |  

Abstract

The electrostatically formed nanowire (EFN) gas sensor is based on a multiple-gate field-effect transistor with a conducting nanowire, which is not defined physically; rather, the nanowire is defined electrostatically post-fabrication, by using appropriate biasing of the different surrounding gates. The EFN is fabricated by using standard silicon processing technologies with relaxed design rules and, thereby, supports the realization of a low-cost and robust gas sensor, suitable for mass production. Although the smallest lithographic definition is higher than half a micrometer, appropriate tuning of the biasing of the gates concludes a conducting channel with a tunable diameter, which can transform the conducting channel into a nanowire with a diameter smaller than 20 nm. The tunable size and shape of the nanowire elicits tunable sensing parameters, such as sensitivity, limit of detection, and dynamic range, such that a single EFN gas sensor can perform with high sensitivity and a broad dynamic range by merely changing the biasing configuration. The current work reviews the design of the EFN gas sensor, its fabrication considerations and process flow, means of electrical characterization, and preliminary sensing performance at room temperature, underlying the unique and advantageous tunable capability of the device. View Full-Text
Keywords: electrostatically formed nanowire; gas sensor; ethanol; silicon; Kelvin probe force microscopy electrostatically formed nanowire; gas sensor; ethanol; silicon; Kelvin probe force microscopy
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Shalev, G. The Electrostatically Formed Nanowire: A Novel Platform for Gas-Sensing Applications. Sensors 2017, 17, 471.

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