(Invited) Welding of Nickel Nanowires By Ions Beam Irradiation: From Small to Large Scale

Wednesday, 4 October 2017: 17:10
Chesapeake E (Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center)


In order to replace conventional transparent conducting electrodes, metal nanowires (MNWs) networks have long been act as promising contenders due to their high mechanical flexibility. However, nanowire-nanowire contact resistance is main technical obstruction in terms of improvement in their performance. To reduce nanowire-nanowire contact resistance, welding of nanowires (NWs) is essential.

In this work, MeV proton and argon ions beam irradiation induced nanoscale welding technique to fabricate X-, Y-, II- and T-shaped molecular junctions between nickel nanowires (Ni-NWs) is presented. Ni-NWs are irradiated by 2.75 MeV proton ions and 3.5 MeV argon ions at doses 1x1016ions/cm2 and 5x1015 respectively while temperature is kept constant. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and x-ray diffraction (XRD) results reveal that Ni-NWs are welded without losing stability in crystal structures of NWs. Afterward, a two-dimensional large scale random network of Ni-NWs is fabricated by 3 MeV proton ions beam irradiation induced nanoscale welding of Ni-NWs at crossing positions. Proton ion beam induced large scale network fabrication is confirmed by TEM and SEM techniques. Moreover, these networks are characterized optically using UV-VIS spectroscopy. It is observed that at a beam fluence of 5x1015 ions/cm2, perfect molecular junctions between Ni-NWs in X-, II-, and V-shapes are achieved and a large scale welded network of Ni-NWs is obtained without distorting the morphology of NWs. Moreover, structure of Ni-NWs remains stable under 3MeV proton ions beam irradiation and networks are found to be optically transparent. The results exhibit that fabrication of Ni-NWs network precede through three steps:

i- High energy ions beam irradiation induced heat spikes lead to locally heat and fuse Ni-NWs,

ii- Formation of molecular junctions on small scale,

iii- Formation of large scale network

Ions beam irradiation induced welding of Ni-NWs can improve performance of NWs networks by reducing contact resistance between NWs for application as transparent conducting electrodes. These high quality welded MNWs networks may potentially be applied as transparent conducting electrodes in optoelectronic devices.