Diagnosing nanoelectronic components using coherent electrons

Kai He, John Cumings*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We present the direct observation, using off-axis electron holography (EH), of the electric potential distribution in the vicinity of a single carbon nanotube electrically biased by two closely spaced contacts. When our results are combined with finite element modeling, we demonstrate the ability to separately observe the electrostatic potential drops across the metal contacts at the interface with the nanotube and along the length of the nanotube itself. We demonstrate that the uneven resistivity of different contacts can cause an asymmetric EH phase shift, which can readily be identified and quantified. EH thus offers a unique and precise approach for in-depth understanding and quick diagnosis of many similar nanoscale electronic devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4815-4819
Number of pages5
JournalNano letters
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 9 2013


  • Carbon nanotube
  • contact resistance
  • device diagnosis
  • diffusive transport
  • electric potential
  • electron holography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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