We designed a silicon-processing compatible, simple, and cheap device operating at a power down to sub- W. It has a pillar-shaped structure with a nanoscopic (10–100 nm in size) conductive link (the so-called antifuse) created between two electrodes separated by a SiO2 layer. The device exhibits a diode-like behavior due to the depletion effects in the mono-silicon pillar. The device is capable of maintaining a microscopic hot-surface area of several hundreds degrees centigrade. The size of the hot area and its temperature can be manipulated by the sign of the applied bias. Two different heat-generation mechanisms (i.e., dissipation at a resistor and a non-radiative recombination of carriers) are proposed and modelled. Such a device can be used as a heat source, as a light source, and as a sensitive detector of light and heat. In this paper, we describe thermo-electrical properties of the fabricated devices and demonstrate their feasibility to perform as gas-, adsorption-, desorption sensors, and as units for activating chemisorption/decomposition of gaseous precursors, i.e., micro-reactors.
- SC-ICS: Integrated Chemical Sensors