Hooking up | Science News

ADVERTISEMENT

MISSION CRITICAL

Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


News

Hooking up

By
10:17am, November 6, 2007

Researchers have created molecules that spontaneously form sturdy networks on a surface, a step that could bring molecular-scale electronic circuits closer to reality.

Leonhard Grill of the Free University of Berlin and his colleagues synthesized flat, square molecules with arms extending from all four sides. The team engineered the molecules to be either reactive or inert at the tip of each arm, and then temporarily capped the reactive tips with bromine atoms.

Deposited onto a gold surface, the molecules slid around, nudged by random thermal jittering. Heating the surface to 270°C for about 15 minutes drove off the bromine caps. As the molecules continued to wander, their reactive ends began to find one another and for

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content