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NRI scientist Latha Venkataraman created first single-molecule device

The electronic device has a potential of real-world technological applications for nanoscale devices.

May 27, 2015 15:30 IST
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NRI scientist Latha Venkataraman on 25 May 2015 created first single-molecule device.  The electronic device has a potential of real-world technological applications for nanoscale devices. The report was published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

Under the direction of Venkataraman, researchers created a single-molecule diode which performs 50 times better than all prior designs.

A team of Columbia Engineering researchers has constructed a device where the active element is only a single molecule, has long been a tantalising dream in nanoscience.

With electronic devices becoming smaller every day, the field of molecular electronics has become more critical in solving the problem of further miniaturisation. Single molecule represents the limit of miniaturisation.

The idea of creating a single-molecule diode was suggested by Arieh Aviram and Mark Ratner who theorised in 1974 that a molecule could act as a rectifier, a one-way conductor of electric current.

The researchers are now working on understanding the fundamental physics behind their discovery and trying to increase the rectification ratios they observed, using new molecular systems.

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