In Situ TEM Creation and Electrical Characterization of Nanowire Devices

Christian Kallesoe, Technical University of Denmark; Danish Technol Inst
Cheng-Yen Wen, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Timothy J. Booth, Technical University of Denmark
Ole Hansen, Technical University of Denmark
Peter Boggild, Technical University of Denmark
Frances M. Ross, International Business Machines (IBM)
Kristian Molhave, Technical University of Denmark

Date of this Version



Nano Letters, 2012, 12 (6), pp 2965–2970 DOI: 10.1021/nl300704u


We demonstrate the observation and measurement of simple nanoscale devices over their complete lifecycle from creation to failure within a transmission electron microscope. Devices were formed by growing Si nanowires, using the vapor-liquid-solid method, to form bridges between Si cantilevers. We characterize the formation of the the nature of the connection depends on the flow of heat and V contact between the nanowire and the cantilever, showing that electrical current during and after the moment of contact. We measure the electrical properties and high current failure characteristics of the resulting bridge devices in situ and relate these to the structure. We also describe processes to modify the contact and the nanowire surface after device formation. The technique we describe allows the direct analysis of the processes taking place during device formation and use, correlating specific nanoscale structural and electrical parameters on an individual device basis.


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology