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The University of Southampton

Molecules in Circuits: a New Breed of Microelectronics? Seminar

Richard L McCreery
15 May 2015
Building 27, Room 2001 Chemistry University of Southampton Southampton SO17 1BJ

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Nuria Garcia-Araez at .

Event details

Richard McCreery presents an electrochemistry seminar.

Molecules may be considered electronic systems, with electrons rapidly moving through molecular orbitals and also long distances in biological metabolism and photosynthesis. The prospect of incorporating molecules into microelectronic circuits based on silicon and metallic conductors has great potential for enhancing consumer electronics, providing solar energy conversion, and permitting new functions not possible with silicon. In order to combine the electronic properties of molecules with conventional microelectronics, we need to understand how to “connect” to molecules as well as how electrons are transported through molecules. Once the “rules” of charge transport through molecules are understood, it should be possible to “rationally design” new molecular electronic devices for valuable functions not currently possible with silicon. While Molecular Electronics holds great promise, it also presents significant challenges in handling and fabrication of devices with dimensions of only a few nanometers. We use surface chemistry, spectroscopy, and conjugated organic molecules to make “molecular junctions” consisting of a single layer of molecules between conducting carbon and copper electrodes, then we study the behavior of molecules as circuit elements. The primary goal is to design and build functional molecular electronic components to greatly enhance the already powerful world of silicon microelectronics. A demonstration of the first commercial application of molecular electronics in audio processing will be presented.

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 (1) Fereiro, J. A.; Kondratenko, M.; Bergren, A. J.; McCreery, R. L.; Internal Photoemission in Molecular Junctions: Parameters for Interfacial Barrier Determinations; J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2015, 137, 1296.

(2) McCreery, R.; Bergren, A.; Morteza-Najarian, A.; Sayed, S. Y.; Yan, H.; Electron transport in all-carbon molecular electronic devices; Faraday Discussions 2014, 172, 9.

(3) Yan, H.; Bergren, A. J.; McCreery, R.; Della Rocca, M. L.; Martin, P.; Lafarge, P.; Lacroix, J. C.; Activationless charge transport across 4.5 to 22 nm in molecular electronic junctions; Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2013, 110, 5326.

(4) McCreery, R.; Yan, H.; Bergren, A. J.; A Critical Perspective on Molecular Electronic Junctions: There is Plenty of Room in the Middle; Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 2013, 15, 1065.

Speaker information

Professor Richard L McCreery, National Institute for Nanotechnology, University of Alberta. Richard L. McCreery is currently Professor of Chemistry at the University of Alberta, with a joint appointment as a Senior Research Officer at the National Institute for Nanotechnology. Until 2006, he was Dow Professor of Chemistry at the Ohio State University. He received his B.S. in chemistry from the University of California, Riverside, in 1970, and Ph.D. under Ralph Adams at the University of Kansas in 1974. His research involves spectroscopic probes of electrochemical processes, the electronic and electrochemical properties of carbon materials, and carbon-based molecular electronics. Much of the research involves collaborations with materials scientists and engineers, as well as surface scientists and electrochemists. He leads an effort at NINT and UofA to investigate hybrid devices for molecular electronics, which combine existing CMOS technology with new electronic and optoelectronic devices containing active molecular components. A practical application of carbon-based molecular electronics to audio processing in electronic music will be available commercially in mid-2015. McCreery has written over 230 refereed publications, including one book and ten U.S. Patents, with three of those extended to Europe and Japan. He has served as an Associate Editor for the American Chemical Society journal Analytical Chemistry since 2004.

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