Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > An ultrasensitive molybdenum-based image sensor: New material can result in 5 times more sensitive cameras

This prototype is the first ever molybdenum based image sensor, 5 times more sensitive than current silicium-based technology

Credit: EPFL / Alain Herzog
This prototype is the first ever molybdenum based image sensor, 5 times more sensitive than current silicium-based technology

Credit: EPFL / Alain Herzog

Abstract:
A new material has the potential to improve the sensitivity of photographic image sensors by a factor of five. In 2011, an EPFL team led by Andras Kis discovered the amazing semi-conducting properties of molybdenite (MoS2), and they have been exploring its potential in various technological applications ever since. This promising candidate for replacing silicon has now been integrated in a prototype of an image sensor. This sensor, described in an article appearing in Nature Nanotechnology, has five times the light sensitivity of current technology.

An ultrasensitive molybdenum-based image sensor: New material can result in 5 times more sensitive cameras

Lausanne, Switzerland | Posted on June 12th, 2013

All digital cameras work according to the same principle: they convert light into an electric charge. The camera has a light sensor, whose surface is a semi-conducting material that is divided into millions of cells, or pixels. The semi-conducting material on each cell reacts to the incoming light by generating a specific electrical charge, which is then transferred to the camera's firmware for processing. The efficiency of this process depends on the quantity of light that is needed to trigger the charge transfer.

The all-time pixel record

The objective of the EPFL researchers was to demonstrate molybdenite's potential in image sensors. For this reason, their sensor only has a single pixel. But it needs five times less light to trigger a charge transfer than the silicon-based sensors that are currently available. "Our main goal is to prove that MoS2 is an ideal candidate for this kind of application," explains Kis.

This level of sensitivity would open up the huge area of low-light or night photography, without resorting to "noise"-generating amplification techniques, slowing down the shutter speed or using a flash. For some specialized domains in which light conditions are often not optimal, such as astrophotography or biological imaging, the advantage is even more obvious. "It would make it possible to take photographs using only starlight," says Kis.

A revolutionary material

Molybdenite's extraordinary properties make this performance possible. Like the silicon used in currently available sensors, molybdenite requires an electric current, which comes from the battery. To generate a pixel, the charge generated by the light energy must be greater than the threshold current from the battery.

A single-atom layer of molybdenite requires only a very small electric charge to function. Because of this, it takes much less light energy to reach the threshold needed to generate a pixel. MoS2 is a naturally abundant, inexpensive material. In addition, Kis explains, the prototype doesn't require any other semi-conductors, which should greatly simplify manufacturing processes. Kis, who is a pioneer in research on the semi-conductivity of molybdenite, recently demonstrated its potential in an integrated circuit and, in early 2013, a flash memory prototoype. With this new step into imaging, molybdenite shows its extraordinary potential in another important area of application.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Lionel Pousaz

41-795-597-161

Copyright © Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Diamonds closer to becoming ideal semiconductors: Researchers find new method for doping single crystals of diamond May 25th, 2016

Light can 'heal' defects in new solar cell materials: Defects in some new electronic materials can be removed by making ions move under illumination May 24th, 2016

Attosecond physics: A switch for light-wave electronics May 24th, 2016

Supercrystals with new architecture can enhance drug synthesis May 24th, 2016

Nanoscale Trojan horses treat inflammation May 24th, 2016

Imaging

Light can 'heal' defects in new solar cell materials: Defects in some new electronic materials can be removed by making ions move under illumination May 24th, 2016

Chip Technology

Diamonds closer to becoming ideal semiconductors: Researchers find new method for doping single crystals of diamond May 25th, 2016

Dartmouth team creates new method to control quantum systems May 24th, 2016

Attosecond physics: A switch for light-wave electronics May 24th, 2016

Physicists create first metamaterial with rewritable magnetic ordering May 23rd, 2016

Sensors

Dartmouth team creates new method to control quantum systems May 24th, 2016

Electronic device detects molecules linked to cancer, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's: An inexpensive portable biosensor has been developed by researchers at Brazil's National Nanotechnology Laboratory with FAPESP's support May 20th, 2016

Making organs transparent to improve nanomedicine (video) May 13th, 2016

Scientists take a major leap toward a 'perfect' quantum metamaterial: Berkeley Lab, UC Berkeley researchers lead study that uses trapped atoms in an artificial crystal of light May 13th, 2016

Discoveries

Diamonds closer to becoming ideal semiconductors: Researchers find new method for doping single crystals of diamond May 25th, 2016

Light can 'heal' defects in new solar cell materials: Defects in some new electronic materials can be removed by making ions move under illumination May 24th, 2016

Attosecond physics: A switch for light-wave electronics May 24th, 2016

Supercrystals with new architecture can enhance drug synthesis May 24th, 2016

Announcements

Diamonds closer to becoming ideal semiconductors: Researchers find new method for doping single crystals of diamond May 25th, 2016

Light can 'heal' defects in new solar cell materials: Defects in some new electronic materials can be removed by making ions move under illumination May 24th, 2016

Attosecond physics: A switch for light-wave electronics May 24th, 2016

Supercrystals with new architecture can enhance drug synthesis May 24th, 2016

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic