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Silicon Nanowires

Material Matters Volume 6 Article 1

Aldrich® Materials Science is proud to offer a selection of high-purity silicon nanowires for use in a variety of high-technology applications. The nanowires are available monodispersed either undoped or doped (p-type) as well as polydispersed with varying lengths. As analogs to carbon nanotube materials, silicon nanowires are beginning to be realized for applications including field-effect transistors,1 photovoltaics,2 sensors,3 lithium batteries4 and catalysts.5 They can be assembled or aligned onto a number of flexible or transparent substrates using both established and cutting-edge methods. One such refined method includes the alignment of individual silicon nanowires between more than 16,000 electrodes using a balanced combination of dielectrophoretic forces and uniform fluid flow.6

Silicon nanowires are also excellent candidates for biologically related applications such as tissue-engineering, biosensors and drug/genedelivery because they are environmentally friendly, biocompatible and simple to modify.7 The nanoscale diameter and the high aspect ratio of silicon nanowires allow them to be readily accessible to the interior of living cells, which opens up the study of intracellular molecular level interactions.8 Their compatibility with conventional silicon microtechnology, together with reliable quality and consistent availability from Aldrich Materials Science will help accelerate the adoption of these high-performance materials. Together with the availability of gold nanowires, more effective development of nanowire-based technologies is expected.

Monodispersed Silicon Nanowires*

Prod. No. Doping Approx.
Dimen. (D × L)
Dispersant Conc. Purity
730866 Undoped 150 nm × 20 μm Isopropyl Alcohol ~1 μg/mL >99% Si
730874 P-I-P 150 nm × 20 μm Isopropyl Alcohol ~1 μg/mL >99% Si

Polydispersed Silicon Nanowires*

Prod. No. Doping Approx.
Dimen. (D × L)
Form Purity
731498 Undoped 40 nm × 1–20 μm Powder >99% Si

Gold Nanowires

Prod. No. Approx.
Dimen. (D × L)
Dispersant Concentration
716944 30 nm × 45 μm Water 60 μg/mL
716952 30 nm × 60 μm Water 50 μg/mL

Figure 1. A single Si nanowire junction

Figure 2. An SEM image of gold nanowires

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  1. Duan, X.; Niu, C.; Sahi, V.; Chen, J.; Parce, J. W.; Empedocles, S.; Goldman, J. Nature 2003, 425, 274-278.
  2. Zhu, J.; Cui, Y. Nat. Mater. 2010, 9, 183–184.
  3. Fang, C.; Agarwal, A.; Widjaja, E.; Garland, M. V.; Wong, S. M.; Linn, L.; Khalid, N. M.; Salim, S. M.; Balasubramanian, N. Chem. Mater. 2009, 21, 3542–3548.
  4. Peng, K. Q.; Jie, J. S.; Zhang, W. J.; Lee, S. T. Appl. Phys. Lett. 2008, 93, 033105.
  5. Tsang, C. H. A.; Liu, Y.; Kang, Z. H.; Ma, D. D. D.; Wong, N. B.; Lee, S. T. Chem. Commun. 2009, 39, 5829–5831.
  6. Freer, E. M.; Grachev, O.; Stumbo, D. P. Nat. Nanotechnol. 2010, 5, 525–530.
  7. a) Patolsky, F.; Timko, B. P.; Yu, G. H.; Fang, Y.; Greytak, A. B.; Zheng, G. F. Lieber, C. M. Science 2006, 313, 1100–1104. b) Gao, Z. Q.; Agarwal, A.; Trigg, A. D.; Singh, N.; Fang, C.; Tung, C. H.; Fan, Y.; Buddharaju, K. D.; Kong, J. M. Anal. Chem. 2007, 79, 3291–3297.
  8. Zheng, G. F.; Patolsky, F.; Cui, Y.; Wang, W. U.; Lieber, C. M. Nat. Biotechnol. 2005, 23, 1294–1301.

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