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Chemical-free and scalable process for the fabrication of a uniform array of liquid-gated CNTFET, evaluated by KCl electrolyte

Biosensors based on liquid-gated carbon nanotubes field-effect transistors (LG-CNTFETs) have attracted considerable attention, as they offer high sensitivity and selectivity; quick response and label-free detection. However, their practical applications are limited due to the numerous fabrication challenges including resist-based lithography, in which after the lithography process, the resist leaves trace level contaminations over the CNTs that affect the performance of the fabricated biosensors. Here, we report the realization of LG-CNTFET devices using silicon shadow mask-based chemical-free lithography process on a 3-in. silicon wafer, yielding 21 sensor chips. Each sensor chip consists of 3 × 3 array of LG-CNTFET devices. Field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM) and Raman mapping confirm the isolation of devices within the array chip having 9 individual devices. A reference electrode (Ag/AgCl) is used to demonstrate the uniformity of sensing performances among the fabricated LG-CNTFET devices in an array using different KCl molar solutions. The average threshold voltage (Vth) for all 9 devices varies from 0.46 to 0.19 V for 0.1 mM to 1 M KCl concentration range. This developed chemical-free process of LG-CNTFET array fabrication is simple, inexpensive, rapid having a commercial scope and thus opens a new realm of scalable realization of various biosensors.