Electrical properties of self-organized nanostructures of alkanethiol-encapsulated gold particles

Shujuan Huang, Gen Tsutsui, Hiroyuki Sakaue, Shoso Shingubara, Takayuki Takahagi

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19 Citations (Scopus)


In this article, we present the fabrication and electrical characterization of nanostructures made of alkanethiol-encapsulated gold particles. We fabricated ordered close-packed monolayer and multilayer structures of encapsulated gold particles using a self-organization process. Room-temperature electrical properties of these nanostructures were studied by using a conductive atomic force microscope. In both cases of monolayer and multilayer structures, the current suppression around zero bias was observed for 9-nm-diameter gold particles. However, it was not observed for 20-nm-diameter particles. This suggests that the Coulomb blockade has occurred in the case of 9-nm-diameter particles. Moreover, the current–voltage properties of multilayer structures demonstrate a nearly linear relation between the Coulomb gap Vg and the number of layers NL, which is in good agreement with the theory of single-electron tunneling in a tunnel-junction array. These electrical properties suggest that an alkanethiol shell on gold particles can serve as a stable tunnel barrier. As a consequence, the proposed method for fabricating quantum dot structures is very useful for developing nanoelectronic devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2653-2657
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Vacuum Science and Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2000
Externally publishedYes


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