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Low-frequency 1/f noise in graphene devices


Low-frequency noise with a spectral density that depends inversely on frequency has been observed in a wide variety of systems including current fluctuations in resistors, intensity fluctuations in music and signals in human cognition. In electronics, the phenomenon, which is known as 1/f noise, flicker noise or excess noise, hampers the operation of numerous devices and circuits, and can be a significant impediment to the development of practical applications from new materials. Graphene offers unique opportunities for studying 1/f noise because of its two-dimensional structure and widely tunable two-dimensional carrier concentration. The creation of practical graphene-based devices will also depend on our ability to understand and control the low-frequency noise in this material system. Here, the characteristic features of 1/f noise in graphene and few-layer graphene are reviewed, and the implications of such noise for the development of graphene-based electronics including high-frequency devices and sensors are examined.

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Figure 1: Noise characteristics of graphene devices.
Figure 2: Noise reduction in graphene devices.
Figure 3: Low-frequency noise as a sensing signal.


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This work was supported, in part, by the Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and Defence Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) through FCRP Center for Function Accelerated nanoMaterial Engineering (FAME), and by the National Science Foundation (NSF) projects CCF-1217382, EECS-1124733 and EECS-1102074. The author is indebted to S. Rumyantsev (RPI and Ioffe Institute) for critical reading of the manuscript and providing valuable suggestions. He also acknowledges insightful discussions on 1/f noise in graphene with M. Shur (RPI).

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Correspondence to Alexander A. Balandin.

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Balandin, A. Low-frequency 1/f noise in graphene devices. Nature Nanotech 8, 549–555 (2013).

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