Modification of Silver/Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube Electrical Contact Interfaces via Ion Irradiation.
Introduction of defects via ion irradiation ex situ to modify silver/single-wall carbon nanotube (Ag-SWCNT) electrical contacts and the resulting changes in the electrical properties were studied. Two test samples were fabricated by depositing 0.1 μm Ag onto SWCNT thin films with average thicknesses of 10 and 60 nm, followed by ion irradiation (150 keV 11B+ at 5 × 1014 ions/cm2). The contact resistance (Rc) between the Ag and SWCNT thin films was determined using transfer length method (TLM) measurements before and after ion irradiation. Rc increases for both test samples after irradiation, while there is no change in Rc for control structures with thick Ag contacts (1.5 μm), indicating that changes in Rc originate from changes in the SWCNT films and at the Ag-SWCNT interface caused by ion penetration through the Ag contact electrodes. Rc increases by ∼4× for the 60 nm SWCNT structure and increases by ∼2.4× for the 10 nm SWCNT structure. Raman spectroscopy measurements of the SWCNTs under the contacts compared to the starting SWCNT film show that the degradation of the 10 nm SWCNT structure was less significant than that of the 60 nm SWCNT structure, suggesting that the smaller change in Rc for the 10 nm SWCNT structure is a result of the thickness-dependent damage profile in the SWCNTs. Despite the increase in overall contact resistance, further TLM analysis reveals that the specific contact resistance actually decreases by ∼3.5-4× for both test samples, suggesting an enhancement of the electrical properties at the Ag-SWCNT interface. Irradiation simulations provide a physical description of the underlying mechanism, revealing that Ag atoms are forward-scattered into the SWCNTs, creating an Ag/C interfacial layer several nanometers in depth. The collective results indicate competing effects of improvement of the Ag-SWCNT interface versus degradation of the bulk SWCNT films, which has implications for scaled high-performance devices employing thinner SWCNT films.
Cox, ND; Cress, CD; Rossi, JE; Puchades, I; Merrill, A; Franklin, AD; Landi, BJ
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