Breakthrough in nanoscience: Indian origin scientist creates first single molecule device



By NewsGram Staff Writer

Under the direction of Latha Venkataraman, an Indian- American scientist, a team of Columbia Engineering has created a single-molecule electronic device. This team is the first to develop a single-molecule diode that may have real-world technological applications for nanoscale devices. Their paper, ‘Single-Molecule Diodes with High On-Off Ratios through Environmental Control’ was published on May 25 in Nature Nanotechnology.

“Our new device represents the ultimate in functional miniaturization that can be achieved for an electronic device,” said Venkataraman as reported by IANS.

“Constructing a device where the active elements are only a single molecule has long been a tantalizing dream in nanoscience”, she added.

The idea of creating a single-molecule diode was suggested by Arieh Aviram and Mark Ratner who theorized in 1974 that a molecule could act as a rectifier, a one-way conductor of electric current. Since then the researchers have been exploring the charge-transport properties of molecules.

As per the report Venkataraman and her team are now working on understanding the fundamental physics behind their discovery and trying to increase the rectification ratios they observed, using new molecular systems.