Low-Frequency Noise in Graphene Tunnel Junctions

Puczkarski, Paweł and Wu, Qingqing and Sadeghi, Hatef and Hou, Songjun and Karimi, Amin and Sheng, Yuewen and Warner, Jamie H. and Lambert, Colin J. and Briggs, G. Andrew D. and Mol, Jan A. (2018) Low-Frequency Noise in Graphene Tunnel Junctions. ACS Nano, 12 (9). pp. 9451-9460. ISSN 1936-0851

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Graphene tunnel junctions are a promising experimental platform for single molecule electronics and biosensing. Ultimately their noise properties will play a critical role in developing these applications. Here we report a study of electrical noise in graphene tunnel junctions fabricated through feedback-controlled electroburning. We observe random telegraph signals characterized by a Lorentzian noise spectrum at cryogenic temperatures (77 K) and a 1/f noise spectrum at room temperature. To gain insight into the origin of these noise features, we introduce a theoretical model that couples a quantum mechanical tunnel barrier to one or more classical fluctuators. The fluctuators are identified as charge traps in the underlying dielectric, which through random fluctuations in their occupation introduce time-dependent modulations in the electrostatic environment that shift the potential barrier of the junction. Analysis of the experimental results and the tight-binding model indicate that the random trap occupation is governed by Poisson statistics. In the 35 devices measured at room temperature, we observe a 20–60% time-dependent variance of the current, which can be attributed to a relative potential barrier shift of between 6% and 10%. In 10 devices measured at 77 K, we observe a 10% time-dependent variance of the current, which can be attributed to a relative potential barrier shift of between 3% and 4%. Our measurements reveal a high sensitivity of the graphene tunnel junctions to their local electrostatic environment, with observable features of intertrap Coulomb interactions in the distribution of current switching amplitudes.

Item Type:
Journal Article
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ACS Nano
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This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in ACS Nano, copyright © American Chemical Society after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsnano.8b04713
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27 Sep 2018 10:00
Last Modified:
15 Sep 2023 00:46