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Highly Conductive Ribbons Prepared by Stick–Slip Assembly of Organosoluble Gold Nanoparticles

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journal contribution
posted on 25.02.2014 by Jimmy Lawrence, Jonathan T. Pham, Dong Yun Lee, Yujie Liu, Alfred J. Crosby, Todd Emrick
Precisely positioning and assembling nanoparticles (NPs) into hierarchical nanostructures is opening opportunities in a wide variety of applications. Many techniques employed to produce hierarchical micrometer and nanoscale structures are limited by complex fabrication of templates and difficulties with scalability. Here we describe the fabrication and characterization of conductive nanoparticle ribbons prepared from surfactant-free organosoluble gold nanoparticles (Au NPs). We used a flow-coating technique in a controlled, stick–slip assembly to regulate the deposition of Au NPs into densely packed, multilayered structures. This affords centimeter-scale long, high-resolution Au NP ribbons with precise periodic spacing in a rapid manner, up to 2 orders-of-magnitude finer and faster than previously reported methods. These Au NP ribbons exhibit linear ohmic response, with conductivity that varies by changing the binding headgroup of the ligands. Controlling NP percolation during sintering (e.g., by adding polymer to retard rapid NP coalescence) enables the formation of highly conductive ribbons, similar to thermally sintered conductive adhesives. Hierarchical, conductive Au NP ribbons represent a promising platform to enable opportunities in sensing, optoelectronics, and electromechanical devices.