Transport at Nanoscale Interfaces Laboratory

Charge noise in organic electrochemical transistors.

Stoop, R. L., Thodkar, K., Sessolo, M., Bolink, H. J., Schönenberger, C., & Calame, M. (2017).

Physical Review Applied, 7(1), 014009 (8 pp.)., 2017


Organic electrochemical transistors (OECTs) are increasingly studied as transducers in sensing applications. While much emphasis has been placed on analyzing and maximizing the OECT signal, noise has been mostly ignored, although it determines the resolution of the sensor. The major contribution to the noise in sensing devices is the 1 / f noise, dominant at low frequency. In this work, we demonstrate that the 1 / f noise in OECTs follows a charge-noise model, which reveals that the noise is due to charge fluctuations in proximity or within the bulk of the channel material. We present the noise scaling behavior with gate voltage, channel dimensions, and polymer thickness. Our results suggest the use of large area channels in order to maximize the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for biochemical and electrostatic sensing applications. A comparison with the literature shows that the magnitude of the noise in OECTs is similar to that observed in graphene transistors, and only slightly higher than that found in carbon nanotubes and silicon nanowire devices. In a model ion-sensing experiment with OECTs, we estimate crucial parameters such as the characteristic SNR and the corresponding limit of detection.