Controlled nanoscale doping of semiconductors via molecular monolayers

Johnny C. Ho, Roie Yerushalmi, Zachery A. Jacobson, Zhiyong Fan, Robert L. Alley, Ali Javey*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

300 Scopus citations


One of the major challenges towards scaling electronic devices to the nanometre-size regime is attaining controlled doping of semiconductor materials with atomic accuracy, as at such small scales, the various existing technologies suffer from a number of setbacks. Here, we present a novel strategy for controlled, nanoscale doping of semiconductor materials by taking advantage of the crystalline nature of silicon and its rich, self-limiting surface reaction properties. Our method relies on the formation of a highly uniform and covalently bonded monolayer of dopant-containing molecules, which enables deterministic positioning of dopant atoms on the Si surfaces. In a subsequent annealing step, the dopant atoms are diffused into the Si lattice to attain the desired doping profile. We show the versatility of our approach through controlled p- and n-doping of a wide range of semiconductor materials, including ultrathin silicon-on-insulator substrates and nanowires, which are then configured into novel transistor structures.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)62-67
Number of pages6
JournalNature Materials
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are indebted to C. Hu for insightful discussions and suggestions. We thank M. Rolandi for help with ellipsometry measurements. This work was supported by the MARCO MSD Focus Center Research Program, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a Junior Faculty Research Award from UC Berkeley and a Human Frontiers Science Program fellowship (R.Y.). All fabrication was carried out in the Berkeley Microlab facility. Correspondence and requests for materials should be addressed to A.J. Supplementary Information accompanies this paper on


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