Research Article

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2016, 9(5): 1346–1357

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https://doi.org/10.1007/s12274-016-1030-0

Ultrasensitive strain gauge with tunable temperature coefficient of resistivity

Lizhi Yi1, Weihong Jiao1, Changming Zhu1, Ke Wu1, Chao Zhang1,2, Lihua Qian1,2 (*), Shuai Wang3, Yingtao Jiang4, and Songliu Yuan1 (*)

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1 School of Physics, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China
2 Flexible Electronics Research Center, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China
3 School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China
4 Nevada Nanotechnology Center & Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Nevada
89154-4026, USA

Keywords: strain gauge, flexible gauge, Au nanoparticle, sound-wave detection, radial-artery detection, electron tunneling
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ABSTRACT We demonstrate an ultrasensitive strain gauge based on a discontinuous metal film with a record detection limit as low as 8.3 × 10–6. Constructed by well-tunable crevices on the nanometer scale within the film, this gauge exhibits an ultrafast dynamic response to vibrations with a frequency range of 1 Hz to 10 kHz. More importantly, the temperature coefficient of resistivity (TCR) of the metal film is tunable owing to the cancellation effect caused by the possibility of tunneling across the nanoscale crevices (showing a negative temperature dependence) and the electron conduction within the metal islands (showing a positive temperature dependence). Consequently, a nullified TCR is achievable when the crevice size can be precisely controlled. Thus, a fabrication strategy to precisely control the nanoscale crevices was developed in this study through the real-time tracking of the electrical conductivity during thermal evaporation. The ultrasensitive strain gauge with a tunable thermal drift introduces numerous opportunities for precision devices and wearable electronics with superior reliability.
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Ultrasensitive strain gauge with tunable temperature coefficient of resistivity. Nano Res. 2016, 9(5): 1346–1357 https://doi.org/10.1007/s12274-016-1030-0

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