Impact of Post-Lithography Polymer Residue on the Electrical Characteristics of MoS 2 and WSe 2 Field Effect Transistors

Jierui Liang, Ke Xu, Blaec Toncini, Brian Bersch, Bhakti Jariwala, Yu Chuan Lin, Joshua Robinson, Susan K. Fullerton-Shirey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The residue of common photo- and electron-beam resists, such as poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), is often present on the surface of 2D crystals after device fabrication. The residue degrades device properties by decreasing carrier mobility and creating unwanted doping. Here, MoS 2 and WSe 2 field effect transistors (FETs) with residue are cleaned by contact mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) and the impact of the residue on: 1) the intrinsic electrical properties, and 2) the effectiveness of electric double layer (EDL) gating are measured. After cleaning, AFM measurements confirm that the surface roughness decreases to its intrinsic state (i.e., ≈0.23 nm for exfoliated MoS 2 and WSe 2 ) and Raman spectroscopy shows that the characteristic peak intensities (E 2g and A 1g ) increase. PMMA residue causes p-type doping corresponding to a charge density of ≈7 × 10 11 cm −2 on back-gated MoS 2 and WSe 2 FETs. For FETs gated with polyethylene oxide (PEO) 76 :CsClO 4 , removing the residue increases the charge density by 4.5 × 10 12 cm −2 , and the maximum drain current by 247% (statistically significant, p < 0.05). Removing the residue likely allows the ions to be positioned closer to the channel surface, which is essential for achieving the best possible electrostatic gate control in ion-gated devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1801321
JournalAdvanced Materials Interfaces
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 8 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of Post-Lithography Polymer Residue on the Electrical Characteristics of MoS <sub>2</sub> and WSe <sub>2</sub> Field Effect Transistors'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this