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Nanoscale semiconductors could get support from DNA

Researchers hope that using DNA's ability to self-assemble could help with the development of nanoscale semiconductors.

A team of researchers have developed a solution to address the industry challenge of organising carbon nanotubes into nanoscale electronic circuits which contain semiconductors.

The researchers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) hoped that DNA origami could be used as 100 square nanometre construction bases for prototyping electronic circuits with semiconductors because of DNA s ability for self-assembly.

Researchers have been trying for a number of years to arrange single-wall carbon nanotubes with diameters of less than two nanometres into desirable geometric patterns.

Single-wall carbon nanotubes are effective semiconductors and are thought to be some of the strongest and most heat-conductive materials.

"DNA is the perfect molecule for recognising other strands of DNA and single-stranded DNA also just happens to like sticking to carbon nanotubes," said Si-ping Han, a theorist in materials science who is currently researching the interactions between carbon nanotubes and DNA at Caltech.

Researchers at Rice University discovered in 2003 that large numbers of pure carbon nanotube fibres could be dissolved in strong acidic solvents, a method which can help the materials become processed on an industrial scale.ADNFCR-2855-ID-19456311-ADNFCR
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