A write-read-erasable memory device was fabricated on layer-by-layer (LbL) ultrathin films prepared from poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT-PSS) and poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDDA). By use of current-sensing atomic force microscopy (CS-AFM), nanopatterns were formed by applying a bias voltage between a conductive tip (Pt-coated Si 3N4 cantilever) in contact with the polymer film and gold substrate. The dependence of the nanopatterns on film thickness, applied bias, and writing speed was studied. Moreover, the height of the patterns was 3-5 times higher than the original thickness of the films, opening the possibility for three-dimensional nanopatterning. The ability of the patterns to be erased after nanowriting was also investigated. By comparing the I-V characteristics under ambient conditions and under N2 environment, a joule-heating activated, water meniscus-assisted anion doping mechanism for the nanopatterning process was determined. Write-read-erase memory device capability was demonstrated on the nanopatterns.
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