Ferroelectric self-assembled molecular materials
Professor Martijn Kemerink of Linköping University has worked with colleagues in Spain and the Netherlands to develop the first material with conductivity properties that can be switched on and off using ferroelectric polarisation.
The phenomenon can be used for small and flexible digital memories of the future, and for completely new types of solar cells.
In an article published in the prestigious scientific journal Science Advances, the research group shows the phenomenon in action in three specially built molecules, and proposes a model for how it works.
"I originally had the idea many years ago, and then I just happened to meet Professor David González-Rodríguez, from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, who had constructed a molecule of exactly the type we were looking for," says Martijn Kemerink.
The organic molecules that the researchers have built conduct electricity and contain dipoles. A dipole has one end with a positive charge and one with a negative charge, and changes its orientation (switches) depending on the voltage applied to it. In a thin film of the newly developed molecules, all the dipoles can be caused to switch at exactly the same time, which means that the film changes its polarisation.
The property is known as ferroelectricity. In this case, it also leads to a change in the conductivity, from low to high or vice versa. When an electrical field with the opposite polarity is applied, the dipoles again switch direction. The polarisation changes, as does the ability to conduct current.
The molecules designed according to the model developed by the LiU researchers tend to spontaneously place themselves on top of each other to form a stack or a supramolecular wire, with a diameter of just a few nanometres. These wires can subsequently be placed into a matrix in which each junction constitutes one bit of information. This will make it possible in the future to construct extremely small digital memories with very high information density. The synthesis of the new molecules is, however, still too complicated for practical use.
"We have developed a model for how the phenomenon arises in principle, and we have shown experimentally that it works for three different molecules. We now need to continue work to build molecules that can be used in practical applications," says Professor Martijn Kemerink, from Complex Materials and Devices at Linköping University, and principal author of the article.
The article: Ferroelectric self-assembled molecular materials showing both rectifying and switchable conductivity, Andrey V. Gorbunov, Miguel Garcia Iglesias, Julia Guilleme, Tim D. Cornelissen, W. S. Christian Roelofs, Tomas Torres, David Gonza?lez-Rodri?guez,
E. W. Meijer and Martijn Kemerink. Science Advances 2017
Professor Martijn Kemerink
+46 13 28 18 75
Martijn Kemerink | EurekAlert!
Researchers demonstrate existence of new form of electronic matter
15.03.2018 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Boron can form a purely honeycomb, graphene-like 2-D structure
15.03.2018 | Science China Press
Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...
On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...
The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...
At the 2018 ILA Berlin Air Show from April 25–29, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is showcasing extreme high-speed Laser Material Deposition (EHLA): A video documents how for metal components that are highly loaded, EHLA has already proved itself as an alternative to hard chrome plating, which is now allowed only under special conditions.
When the EU restricted the use of hexavalent chromium compounds to special applications requiring authorization, the move prompted a rethink in the surface...
At the ILA Berlin, hall 4, booth 202, Fraunhofer FHR will present two radar sensors for navigation support of drones. The sensors are valuable components in the implementation of autonomous flying drones: they function as obstacle detectors to prevent collisions. Radar sensors also operate reliably in restricted visibility, e.g. in foggy or dusty conditions. Due to their ability to measure distances with high precision, the radar sensors can also be used as altimeters when other sources of information such as barometers or GPS are not available or cannot operate optimally.
Drones play an increasingly important role in the area of logistics and services. Well-known logistic companies place great hope in these compact, aerial...
16.03.2018 | Event News
13.03.2018 | Event News
08.03.2018 | Event News
16.03.2018 | Earth Sciences
16.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
16.03.2018 | Life Sciences