Atomic- and molecular-scale self assembly for future nanodevices (Brown(S), Hendy)

Our lithography-based approach to nanofabrication is complemented by “bottom up” assembly of nano-devices using self-assembly techniques. The focus of ongoing work is a UHV STM study of the fundamental self-assembly processes of the important bismuth-on-graphite system, where we have demonstrated an ability to self-assemble a variety of nanostructures and to image them with atomic resolution. This will give insights into new sensor and transistor structures based on quantum size effects in metal, semi-metal and semiconducting nanostructures. Molecular dynamics simulations of the self-assembly processes in action form an integral component of this work. These simulations focus on complex behaviours and instabilities near the melting point of nanoparticles.