Thursday, March 08, 2007

US Patent 7186380 - Molecular transistor with switchable polarization

Hewlett-Packard has made a lot of headway in recent years in molecular electronics. Most of their patents in this field are concerned with nanoscale crossbar arrays but this patent focuses on a transistor employing polarizable molecular material. Claim 1 reads:

1. A transistor comprising: (a) a source region and a drain region separated by a channel region having a length L within a range of about 1 to 100 nm, formed on a substrate, wherein said channel region comprises a semiconductor material; (b) a dielectric layer on at least a portion of said channel region; (c) a molecular layer on said dielectric layer, said molecular layer comprising molecules having a switchable dipolar moiety; (d) a gate electrode having a thickness w within a range of about 1 to 100 nm on said molecular layer; and (e) said molecules having a polarization direction and magnitude, at least one of which is capable of being changed in response to an electric field applied between said gate electrode and said dielectric layer.

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