Facet-dependent electrical conductivity properties of Cu2O crystals

Chih-Shan Tan, Shih Chen Hsu, Wei Hong Ke, Lih-Juann Chen*, Michael H. Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

134 Scopus citations


It is interesting to examine facet-dependent electrical properties of single Cu2O crystals, because such study greatly advances our understanding of various facet effects exhibited by semiconductors. We show a Cu2O octahedron is highly conductive, a cube is moderately conductive, and a rhombic dodecahedron is nonconductive. The conductivity differences are ascribed to the presence of a thin surface layer having different degrees of band bending. When electrical connection was made on two different facets of a rhombicuboctahedron, a diode-like response was obtained, demonstrating the potential of using single polyhedral nanocrystals as functional electronic components. Density of state (DOS) plots for three layers of Cu2O (111), (100), and (110) planes show respective metallic, semimetal, and semiconducting band structures. By examining DOS plots for varying number of planes, the surface layer thicknesses responsible for the facet-dependent electrical properties of Cu2O crystals have been determined to be below 1.5 nm for these facets.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2155-2160
Number of pages6
JournalNano Letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - 11 Mar 2015


  • Band bending
  • cuprous oxide
  • electrical conductivity
  • facet-dependent properties
  • nanocrystals

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