Recognition tunneling

Stuart Lindsay, Jin He, Otto Sankey, Prokop Hapala, Pavel Jelinek, Peiming Zhang, Shuai Chang, Shuo Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

62 Scopus citations

Abstract

Single molecules in a tunnel junction can now be interrogated reliably using chemically functionalized electrodes. Monitoring stochastic bonding fluctuations between a ligand bound to one electrode and its target bound to a second electrode ('tethered molecule-pair' configuration) gives insight into the nature of the intermolecular bonding at a single molecule-pair level, and defines the requirements for reproducible tunneling data. Simulations show that there is an instability in the tunnel gap at large currents, and this results in a multiplicity of contacts with a corresponding spread in the measured currents. At small currents (i.e.large gaps) the gap is stable, and functionalizing a pair of electrodes with recognition reagents (the 'free-analyte' configuration) can generate a distinct tunneling signal when an analyte molecule is trapped in the gap. This opens up a new interface between chemistry and electronics with immediate implications for rapid sequencing of single DNA molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number262001
JournalNanotechnology
Volume21
Issue number26
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 18 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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    Lindsay, S., He, J., Sankey, O., Hapala, P., Jelinek, P., Zhang, P., Chang, S., & Huang, S. (2010). Recognition tunneling. Nanotechnology, 21(26), [262001]. https://doi.org/10.1088/0957-4484/21/26/262001