We present a method to make Pt nanometer-spaced electrodes that are free of metallic particles and stable at ambient conditions. The nanogaps are fabricated using feedback-controlled electromigration to form few-atom contacts. When performing this procedure at elevated temperatures , the Pt contacts undergo self-breaking so that nanometer separated electrode pairs are formed. Once cooled down to lower temperatures, the nanogaps stabilize and can be characterized in detail. We find that current-voltage characteristics can be well fitted to a Simmons model for tunneling and gap-size fluctuations at room temperature determined from these fits stay within 0.6 Å for at least 50 h.
Room-temperature stability of Pt nanogaps formed by self-breaking
F. Prins, T. Hayashi, B. J. A. de Vos van Steenwijk, B. Gao, E. A. Osorio, K. Muraki, H. S. J. van der Zant; Room-temperature stability of Pt nanogaps formed by self-breaking. Appl. Phys. Lett. 23 March 2009; 94 (12): 123108. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.3109784
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