Growth Conditions Control the Elastic and Electrical Properties of ZnO Nanowires

TitleGrowth Conditions Control the Elastic and Electrical Properties of ZnO Nanowires
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsWang, X, Chen, K, Zhang, Y, Wan, J, Warren, OL, Oh, J, Li, J, Ma, E, Shan, Z
JournalNano Letters
Pagination7886 - 7892
Date Published2015/12//

Great efforts have been made to synthesize ZnO nanowires (NWs) as building blocks for a broad range of applications because of their unique mechanical and mechanoelectrical properties. However, little attention has been paid to the correlation between the NWs synthesis condition and these properties. Here we demonstrate that by slightly adjusting the NW growth conditions, the cross-sectional shape of the NWs can be tuned from hexagonal to circular. Room temperature photoluminescence spectra suggested that NWs with cylindrical geometry have a higher density of point defects. In situ transmission electron microscopy (TEM) uniaxial tensile-electrical coupling tests revealed that for similar diameter, the Young's modulus and electrical resistivity of hexagonal NWs is always larger than that of cylindrical NWs, whereas the piezoresistive coefficient of cylindrical NWs is generally higher. With decreasing diameter, the Young's modulus and the resistivity of NWs increase, whereas their piezoresistive coefficient decreases, regardless of the sample geometry. Our findings shed new light on understanding and advancing the performance of ZnO-NW-based devices through optimizing the synthesis conditions of the NWs.