Fabrication of angstrom-scale two-dimensional channels for mass transport

Ankit Bhardwaj, Marcos Vinicius Surmani Martins, Yi You, Ravalika Sajja, Max Rimmer, Solleti Goutham, Rongrong Qi, Sidra Abbas Dar, Boya Radha, Ashok Keerthi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Fluidic channels at atomic scales regulate cellular trafficking and molecular filtration across membranes, and thus play crucial roles in the functioning of living systems. However, constructing synthetic channels experimentally at these scales has been a significant challenge due to the limitations in nanofabrication techniques and the surface roughness of the commonly used materials. Angstrom (Å)-scale slit-like channels overcome such challenges as these are made with precise control over their dimensions and can be used to study the fluidic properties of gases, ions and water at unprecedented scales. Here we provide a detailed fabrication method of the two-dimensional Å-scale channel devices that can be assembled to contain a desired number of channels, a single channel or up to hundreds of channels, made with atomic-scale precision using layered crystals. The procedure includes the fabrication of the substrate, flake, spacer layer, flake transfers, van der Waals assembly and postprocessing. We further explain how to perform molecular transport measurements with the Å-channels to directly probe the intriguing and anomalous phenomena that help shed light on the physics governing ultra-confined transport. The procedure requires a total of 1–2 weeks for the fabrication of the two-dimensional channel device and is suitable for users with prior experience in clean room working environments and nanofabrication.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)240-280
Number of pages41
JournalNature protocols
Volume19
Issue number1
Early online date27 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • physics.app-ph
  • cond-mat.mes-hall

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