Surface-modified silicon nanowire-based field-effect transistors (SiNW-FETs) have proven to be a promising platform for molecular recognition in miniature sensors. In this work, we present a novel nanoFET/device for the sensitive and selective detection of explosives based on affinity layers of metal-organic polyhedra (MOPs). The judicious selection of the \ geometric and electronic characteristics of the assembly units (organic ligands and unsaturated metal site) embedded within the MOP cage allowed for the formation of multiple charge-transfer (CT) interactions to facilitate the selective explosive inclusion. Meanwhile, the host-stabilized CT complex inside the cage acted as an effective molecular gating element to strongly modulate the electrical conductance of the silicon nanowires. By grafting the MOP cages onto a SiNW-FET device, the resulting sensor showed a good electrical sensing capability to various explosives, especially 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT), with a detection limit below the nanomolar level. Importantly, coupling MOPs-which have tunable structures and properties- to SiNW-based devices may open up new avenues for a wide range of sensing applications, addressing various target analytes.
- Charge-transfer interaction
- Explosives detection
- Metal-organic polyhedra
- Molecular recognition
- Silicon nanowire-based field-effect transistor