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Contact-Independent Electrical Conductance Measurement

United States Patent Application

View the Complete Application at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Electrical conductance measurement system including a one-dimensional semiconducting channel, with electrical conductance sensitive to electrostatic fluctuations, in a circuit for measuring channel electrical current. An electrically-conductive element is disposed at a location at which the element is capacitively coupled to the channel; a midpoint of the element aligned with about a midpoint of the channel, and connected to first and second electrically-conductive contact pads that are together in a circuit connected to apply a changing voltage across the element. The electrically-conductive contact pads are laterally spaced from the midpoint of the element by a distance of at least about three times a screening length of the element, given in SI units as (K.di-elect cons..sub.0/e.sup.2D(E.sub.F)).sup.1/2, where K is the static dielectric constant, .di-elect cons..sub.0 is the permittivity of free space, e is electron charge, and D(E.sub.F) is the density of states at the Fermi energy for the element.
Mentzel, Tamar S. (Fair Lawn, NJ), MacLean, Kenneth (Hingham, MA), Kastner, Marc A. (Newton, MA), Ray, Nirat (Natick, MA)
13/ 570,556
August 9, 2012
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH [0002] This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-FG02-08ER46515, awarded by the Department of Energy; and under Contract No. W911NF-07-D-0004, awarded by the Army Research Office. The Government has certain rights in the invention.