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Nanoscale. 2013 Jun 7;5(11):4673-7. doi: 10.1039/c3nr00505d. Epub 2013 Apr 25.

Identification of vibrational signatures from short chains of interlinked molecule-nanoparticle junctions obtained by inelastic electron tunnelling spectroscopy.

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Department of Engineering Sciences, Uppsala University, Box 534, SE-751 21 Uppsala, Sweden.


Short chains containing a series of metal-molecule-nanoparticle nanojunctions are a nano-material system with the potential to give electrical signatures close to those from single molecule experiments while enabling us to build portable devices on a chip. Inelastic electron tunnelling spectroscopy (IETS) measurements provide one of the most characteristic electrical signals of single and few molecules. In interlinked molecule-nanoparticle (NP) chains containing typically 5-7 molecules in a chain, the spectrum is expected to be a superposition of the vibrational signatures of individual molecules. We have established a stable and reproducible molecule-AuNP multi-junction by placing a few 1,8-octanedithiol (ODT) molecules onto a versatile and portable nanoparticle-nanoelectrode platform and measured for the first time vibrational molecular signatures at complex and coupled few-molecule-NP junctions. From quantum transport calculations, we model the IETS spectra and identify vibrational modes as well as the number of molecules contributing to the electron transport in the measured spectra.


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