Self-assembled electrical contact to nanoparticles using metallic droplets

Kan Du*, Christopher R. Knutson, Elizabeth Glogowski, Kevin D. McCarthy, Roy Shenhar, Vincent M. Rotello, Mark T. Tuominen, Todd Emrick, Thomas P. Russell, Anthony D. Dinsmore

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


A study was conducted to demonstrate a simple approach where liquid-metal droplets were coated with a monolayer of ligand-stabilized nanoparticles. Devices formed by this method showed electron transport between droplets that is characteristic of the Coulomb blockade where current was suppressed below a tunable threshold voltage. This approach allowed the generation of a large number of devices in parallel, as nanoparticle-nanoparticle-coated liquid-metal droplets were deposited in a straightforward process on large substrates patterned by microcontact printing or other large-area methods. The devices were composed of of molten gallium (Ga) droplets that served as the conducting electrodes. The Ga droplets were suspended in acid to prevent oxidation. Au nanoparticles stabilized by (1-mercaptoundec-11-yl)-tetra(ethylene glycol) (TEG-OH) ligands were added to the suspension.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1974-1977
Number of pages4
Issue number17
StatePublished - 4 Sep 2009


  • Coulomb blockade
  • Liquid metals
  • Nanoparticles selfassembly


Dive into the research topics of 'Self-assembled electrical contact to nanoparticles using metallic droplets'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this