Project TitleOptical Method for Electrical Characterization
Track Code2016-120
Short Description

Accurate and time-saving method to electrically characterize materials.

#devices #optoelectronic #instrumentation #analytical #research tool #equipment #semiconductor #component 


Accurate measurements of technologically important materials, such as conductive materials found in flexible electronics or fuel cells, can be difficult to achieve using standard methods. Northwestern engineers have developed an electrical characterization method that allows one to accurately measure conductivity and Hall effect of a given material in a single measurement, eliminating the need to switch contacts. The Hall effect can be measured using a single polarity and strength of magnetic field. This decreases the time required to characterize a material, simplifies the characterization procedure and enables the measurement of time-varying conductivities. Time-varying conductivities are known to occur in amorphous oxide semiconductors, which are driving today's flat-panel industry; proper characterization of such conductivity transients could help identify them and eliminate their detrimental effects. Additionally, this method does not require unreasonably large magnetic fields, increasing accuracy of measurements and making it possible to characterize the Hall effect of low mobility materials. Low mobility materials of technological importance include ionic conductors for fuel cells. The electrical characterization method developed at Northwestern provides a quick, accurate and highly sensitive method to electrically characterize a given material and measure transients, it can be useful in a wide variety of industries, including surface analysis instrumentation, semi-conductors and electronics. 

TagsDEVICES: optoelectronic, instrumentation: analytical, research tool: equipment, SEMICONDUCTOR: component
Posted DateOct 3, 2017 11:19 AM


Matthew Grayson*

Jiajun Luo


- Characterization of conductivity transients

- Characterization of Hall effect in ionic conductors, conducting oxides, and organic conductors

- Characterization of Hall effect transients

- Can be integrated into electrical characterization equipment, super-heterodyne circuits, up and down convertersmusic synthesis equipment, optical heterodyning detection research


- Increased accuracy and sensitivity

- Simplistic design

- Time-saving, eliminates the need to switch contact configurations

- Arbitrarily shaped samples and low mobility materials can be electrically characterized


IP Status

US provisional patent application has been filed.

Contact Information

Arjan Quist, PhD
Technology Licensing Officer
(p) 847.467.0305