Introducing the Groundbreaking Gateless P-N Junction Metrolog

“What new technology does is create new opportunities to do a job that customers want done,” according to Silicon Valley thinker and entrepreneur Tim O’Reilly.

One of the National Institute of Science and Technology’s foremost missions is the pursuit of solutions to complex scientific and technological problems in the crucial measurement field.

Hand in hand with this goal is the commitment to introduce the results of NIST research through the commercial marketplace so that NIST’s work will simultaneously benefit the American public and the American economy.

A freshly patented technology designed “to do a job that customers want done” is the Gateless P-N junction metrolog.  This invention by NIST scientist Dr. Albert F. Rigosi solves the issue of using standard metal electrical contacts for connecting multiple devices composed of the same material.

The invention provides the process of building a special device for resistance metrology that allows a user to output many different quantum resistances, like a variable resistor.

Dr. Rigosi, of the Applied Electrical Metrology Group in the Quantum Measurement Division of NIST’s Physical Measurement Laboratory, began work on the project in 2017, and the patent (U. S. Patent 11474134) was issued in October 2022.

He explains, “Graphene is a material that is very good at conducting electricity and light, and it can be made in many ways. One of the most common ways is to grow it on silicon carbide. This type of graphene is called epitaxial graphene (EG). EG has many potential applications, such as making high-speed electronic devices and sensors.

“However, one of the challenges with EG is that it can be difficult to make devices with regions of varying charge carrier (like electrons or holes). This is important because when regions of positively and negatively charged areas on graphene meet, they do so in such a way that there is a very narrow boundary between them.”

Dr. Rigosi describes a new way to make those sharply adjoining regions of varying charge in EG devices in this patent.  He does so using a relatively simple and inexpensive technique, ultraviolet photolithography (UVP).

This transformative innovation is especially suited to mass production and could be used in various semiconductor industries since applying these charge-varying regions is transferable to other semiconductor materials.  

This invention also has the advantage of eliminating bulky equipment and improving resistance uncertainty.

Explore this groundbreaking new technology and see if licensing it could enhance your firm’s growth and prosperity. Check out the patent description gateless p-n junction metrolog and contact NIST’s Technology Partnerships Office at TPO [at] NIST.GOV () for details.

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