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Smooth and conductive DNA-templated Cu2O nanowires: growth morphology, spectroscopic and electrical characterization

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Reda Hassanien, Professor Lidija Siller, Professor Nick Wright, Professor Andrew HoultonORCiD, Dr Ben Horrocks


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DNA strands have been used as templates for the self-assembly of smooth and conductive cuprous oxide (Cu2O) nanowires of diameter 12-23 nm and whose length is determined by the template (16 mu m for lambda-DNA). A combination of spectroscopic, diffraction and probe microscopy techniques showed that these nanowires comprise single crystallites of Cu2O bound to the DNA molecules which fused together over time in a process analogous to Ostwald ripening, but driven by the free energy of interaction with the template as well as the surface tension. Electrical characterization of the nanowires by a non-contact method, scanned conductance microscopy and by contact mode conductive AFM showed the wires are electrically conductive. The conductivity estimated from the AFM cross section and the zero-bias conductance in conductive AFM experiments was 2.2-3.3 S cm(-1). These Cu2O nanowires are amongst the thinnest reported and show evidence of strong quantum confinement in electronic spectra.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hassanien R, Al-Said SAF, Siller L, Little R, Wright NG, Houlton A, Horrocks BR

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Nanotechnology

Year: 2012

Volume: 23

Issue: 7

Print publication date: 20/01/2012

ISSN (print): 0957-4484

ISSN (electronic): 1361-6528

Publisher: Institute of Physics Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1088/0957-4484/23/7/075601


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