We fabricated Pd-coated rough Si nanowires, using a combination of Si electroless etching and Pd sputtering. The semi-densely distributed, vertical-standing rough Si nanowires, which were clustered locally with inter-cluster distances of several nm to several μm, were selected as a basal platform. Pd was coated only on the upper part of the Si nanowires in the semi-dense configuration, and their surface profile replicated the surface morphology of Si nanowires. The Pd-coated rough Si nanowires showed good reversibility and excellent hydrogen-sensing performance in terms of sensitivity (>300%), response time (<3 s), and detection limit (∼5 ppm). These attributes are discussed in terms of the vertical-standing nanowire structures and the rough surface effect of the nanowires. Interestingly, the variation in sensitivity of the Pd-coated Si nanowire sensors was divided into two regimes, which appeared in the low and high hydrogen concentration ranges, respectively. A simple model is also provided to account for this unusual finding.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Chemistry