Random networks and aligned arrays of single-walled carbon nanotubes for electronic device applications
Singled-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs), in the form of ultrathin films of random networks, aligned arrays, or anything in between, provide an unusual type of electronic material that can be integrated into circuits in a conventional, scalable fashion. The electrical, mechanical, and optical properties of such films can, in certain cases, approach the remarkable characteristics of the individual SWNTs, thereby making them attractive for applications in electronics, sensors, and other systems. This review discusses the synthesis and assembly of SWNTs into thin film architectures of various types and provides examples of their use in digital electronic circuits with levels of integration approaching 100 transistors and in analog radio frequency (RF) systems with operating frequencies up to several gigahertz, including transistor radios in which SWNT transistors provide all of the active functionality. The results represent important steps in the development of an SWNT-based electronics technology that could find utility in areas such as flexible electronics, RF analog devices and others that might complement the capabilities of established systems.