Nano Letters

A Platform for Analysis of Nanoscale Liquids with an Array of Sensor Devices Based on Two-Dimensional Material

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Analysis of nanoscale liquids, including wetting and flow phenomena, is a scientific challenge with far reaching implications for industrial technologies. We report the conception, development, and application of an integrated platform for the experimental characterization of liquids at the nanometer scale. The platform combines the functionalities of a two-dimensional electronic array of sensor devices with in situ application of highly sensitive optical microspectroscopy and atomic force microscopy. We demonstrate the performance capabilities of the platform with an embodiment based on an array of optically transparent graphene sensors. The application of electronic and optical sensing in the platform allows for differentiating between liquids electronically, for determining a liquid’s molecular fingerprint, and for monitoring surface wetting dynamics in real time. In order to explore the platform’s sensitivity limits, we record topographies and optical spectra of individual, spatially isolated sessile oil emulsion droplets having volumes of less than ten attoliters. The results demonstrate that integrated measurement functionalities based on two-dimensional materials have the potential to push lab-on-chip based analysis from the microscale to the nanoscale.