Advanced Functional Materials

Control of current hysteresis of networked single-walled carbon nanotube transistors by a ferroelectric polymer gate insulator

View publication


Films made of 2D networks of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) are one of the most promising active-channel materials for field-effect transistors (FETs) and have a variety of flexible electronic applications, ranging from biological and chemical sensors to high-speed switching devices. Challenges, however, still remain due to the current hysteresis of SWNT-containing FETs, which has hindered further development. A new and robust method to control the current hysteresis of a SWNT-network FET is presented, which involves the non-volatile polarization of a ferroelectric poly(vinylidene fluoride-trifluoroethylene) (P(VDF-TrFE)) gate insulator. A top-gate FET with a solution-processed SWNT-network exhibits significant suppression of the hysteresis when the gate-voltage sweep is greater than the coercive field of the ferroelectric polymer layer (≈50 MV m-1). These near-hysteresis-free characteristics are believed to be due to the characteristic hysteresis of the P(VDF-TrFE), resulting from its non-volatile polarization, which makes effective compensation for the current hysteresis of the SWNT-network FETs. The onset voltage for hysteresis-minimized operation is able to be tuned simply by controlling the thickness of the ferroelectric film, which opens the possibility of operating hysteresis-free devices with gate voltages down to a few volts. A simple and robust method is developed to control the characteristic current hysteresis of single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) network field-effect transistiors (FETs) by non-volatile ferroelectric polarization. A top-gate FET with a solution-processed SWNT network channel layer and a ferroelectric poly(vinylidene fluoride-trifluoroethylene) (P(VDF-TrFE)) gate insulator effectively suppresses the current hysteresis when the gate-voltage sweep exceeds the coercive voltage of the P(VDF-TrFE) film. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.