Dry-type poly-Si nanowire pH sensors with high-k dielectrics have been demonstrated with the aid of novel focus ion beam engineered capillary atomic force microscopy (C-AFM) tip. By means of this C-AFM tip coating technique, the relatively few testing solutions can be transferred onto the surface of a nanowire, preventing the sensor device from the immersion in the liquid and therefore suppressing the possible leakae current from the testing solution. As compared with the TEOS SiO 2 , the pH sensors comprising A l2 O 3 , TiO 2 , and HfO 2 high-k materials exhibit the better sensitivities due to their enhanced capacitances. The best sensitivity (138.7 nA/pH) and linearity (99.69%) for a HfO 2 dielectric can be ascribed to the higher k value and larger bandgap with respect to the Al2 O 3 and TiO 2 , accordingly. Consequently, the C-AFM tip coating technique incorporating with HfO 2 dielectric suggests the potential for the detection of a minute quantity of biomedicines.
- High-k dielectrics
- pH sensor