The self-assembly and electron transfer properties of adsorbed organic molecules are of interest for the construction of miniaturized molecular circuitries. We have investigated with scanning probe microscopy the self-organization of two structurally related molecular wires embedded within a supportive alkanethiol matrix. Our results evidence heterogeneous adsorption patterns of the molecular wires on gold with either incommensurate unit cells driven into assembly by lateral interactions or a dynamic, commensurate distribution on gold, along with formation of distinct 2D phases. We also observed diffusion-based conductance switching for one of the molecular wires, due to its propensity toward weaker lateral interactions and Au–S adatom formation. We have further demonstrated through the use of scanning tunneling spectroscopy differential current–voltage response for each molecular wire, despite their close structural similarity. Such molecular wires embedded in alkanethiol matrix and exhibiting conductance-switching phenomena have the potential to be used for the functionalization of electrodes in bioelectronic devices.
Stan, R. C., Kros, A., Akkilic, N., Appel, J., & Sanghamitra, N. J. M. (2015). Conductance Switching and Organization of Two Structurally Related Molecular Wires on Gold. Langmuir, 31(3), 953-958. https://doi.org/10.1021/la5042713