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ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2013 Feb;5(3):822-7. doi: 10.1021/am3023898. Epub 2013 Jan 29.

Carbon quantum dot-based field-effect transistors and their ligand length-dependent carrier mobility.

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System on Chip Chemical Process Research Center, Department of Chemical Engineering, Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang 790-784, South Korea.


We report electrical measurements of films of carbon quantum dots (CQDs) that serve as the channels of field-effects transistors (FETs). To investigate the dependence of the field-effect mobility on ligand length, colloidal CQDs are synthesized and ligand-exchanged with several primary amines of different ligand lengths. We measure current as a function of gate voltage and find that the devices show ambipolar conductivity, with electron and hole mobilities as high as 8.49 × 10(-5) and 3.88 × 10(-5) cm(2) V(-1) s(-1), respectively. The electron mobilities are consistently 2-4 times larger than the hole mobilities. Furthermore, the mobilities decrease exponentially with the increase of the ligand length, which is well-described by the Miller-Abrahams model for nearest-neighbor hopping. Our results provide a theoretical basis to examine charge transport in CQD films and offer new prospects for the fabrication of high-mobility CQD-based optoelectronic devices, including solar cells, light-emitting devices, and optical sensors.

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