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Nanoscale Molecular Transport: The Case of Dip-Pen Nanolithography

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journal contribution
posted on 23.04.2009, 00:00 by Louise R. Giam, Yuhuang Wang, Chad A. Mirkin
In dip-pen nanolithography experiments, many groups have observed that different tips deliver the same ink at different rates. This article presents a quantitative model for understanding this phenomenon and, importantly, a way of controlling it. An inkjet printer is used to deliver controlled amounts of 16-mercaptohexadecanoic acid (MHA) to atomic force microscope tips in an array. Ink transport from each tip is studied as a function of the number of drops delivered. We show a nonlinear dependence of transport rates on the number of drops that arises from surface-area-dependent dissolution of MHA. From this work, MHA dissolution attempt frequencies were calculated to be between 1.3 × 109 and 4.4 × 109 Hz.

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