NobleNEMS - Nanoelectromechanical sensors from 2D noble metal dichalcogenides

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NobleNEMS is coordinated by Professor Max Lemme, holder of the Chair of Electronic Devices at RWTH Aachen University. The aim is to demonstrate highly sensitive nanoelectromechanical sensors (NEMS) made of two-dimensional (2D) materials with noble metals like platinum or palladium. "Here we expect a significant improvement in the sensitivity and scalability of membrane-based pressure sensors and microphones. In the long term, I also see application potential for this technology in acceleration sensors, environmental sensors and infrared photo detectors," says Lemme. Project partners are the TU Dresden and the Universität der Bundeswehr Munich and the project is supported by the companies Infineon, ATV, WITec and AMO. The project is also part of research and teaching at the Aachen Graphene & 2D Materials Center.

The 2D material platinum diselenide (PtSe2) is a representative of the noble metal dichalcogenides (NMD). The electronic properties of PtSe2 are extremely sensitive to mechanical stress. PtSe2 can be produced synthetically with typical semiconductor processes, is stable in air and water, and has already been successfully investigated by the project partners in advance for basic material properties that could lead to a leap innovation in sensor production. The project also includes the research and establishment of 5 additional NMDs (platinum/palladium-based sulphides, selenides, tellurides), which have not yet been investigated in detail.

In NobleNEMS, the CMOS-compatible synthesis of high-quality NMDs is investigated, their electromechanical properties are established and protocols for material quality and integration are developed. Integrated NEMS devices demonstrate the material properties in an application-relevant manner. The comparison of theoretically predicted characteristics realized in the laboratory and obtainable in demonstrator devices allows the evaluation of the new material class with respect to the state-of-the-art technology.

NobleNEMS is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).