Researchers from Rice University say that have plans to create Graphene based quantum dots - which could enable single-molecule sensors and could lead to ultra-small transistors and on-chip communications with semiconductor lasers.

Quantum dots are vacancies (wells) that can confine excitons—bound electron-hole pairs—in a semiconductor to achieve properties that are superior to those of bulk materials. The Rice University researchers have added a new twist—leaving a single layer of carbon in the bottom of the well. The researchers reasoned that by removing islands of hydrogen from both sides of the sheets, tiny wells of conductive graphene, surrounded by the graphene insulator, will be left behind that could be used as quantum dots.

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