NEC fabricates CNT transistors using coating process

Feb. 15, 2008 – NEC says it has developed a carbon nanotube (CNT) transistor using a new channel-coating process, achieving “extremely high mobility” despite performance variation. Results of the research are being presented at this week’s nano tech 2008 International Nanotechnology Exhibition & Conference in Tokyo.

Design guidelines for the CNT transistor, based on an NEC device model, were established to verify the relationship between the transistor characteristics and the length and density of the CNT where the channel is created, and to increase CNT transistor performance. (The part of a transistor that connects the electrodes, NEC explained in a statement — the faster the electrons move in the channel, the faster the electronic device can operate.)

Channel materials of conventional research organic transistors have generally demonstrated insufficient mobility for use in electronic devices requiring high-speed operation — but NEC says its CNT-channel transistor has 100x greater mobility than regular organic transistors.

Work was done toward a goal of creating electronic devices with increased performance but also reduced environmental impact. One potential answer to this dilemma is printed electronics, including organic transistors, where transistors are printed directly onto a substrate. This dramatically simplifies the manufacturing processes vs. that of conventional semiconductors, and reduces waste materials and CO2 emissions by >90%.

“The research results prove the potential of CNTs as a core transistor material, even in the field of printed electronics,” NEC said in a statement, adding that “further research is expected to show the potential to dramatically expand the scope of printed electronics applications.”


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