Interest in using electrostatics for active nano-assembly has grown significantly over the last five years. One common electret structure for such electrostatic constructs is the silicon-silicon dioxide interface. In this paper, an experimental and mathematical analysis of the process of writing negative charge spots in Si-SiO2 is presented. It is demonstrated that controlling the spread of the charge can reduce the spot size and the drop in written potential. Simulation results of a one-dimensional charging model that assumes tunnelling of electrons through the oxide and trapping within SiO2 are presented and compared with the experimental data. The model assumes charge trapping at the Si-SiO2 interface and none at the oxide-air interface or within the oxide bulk. Conducted experiments also show that although the lateral spread of charge places a lower limit on the minimum spot size in silicon-silicon dioxide structures, the use of a hydrophobic hexamethyldisilazane layer can be effective in improving the size stability of the written electrical spots.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering