Publication Date


Type of Culminating Activity


Degree Title

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Major Advisor

William B. Knowlton, Ph.D.


Conductivity types (i.e., insulator, semiconductor, and conductor) can be tuned by varying the size of metallic nanoparticles. DNA origami, a molecular self-assembly technique, has promise to programmatically self-assemble nanoparticles (NPs) with nanometer precision. The work presented here demonstrates the programmatic self-assembly of AuNPs on DNA origami nanotubes (NTs). DNA origami NTs were also functionalized with positively charged Au clusters. DNA origami NTs, both bare and functionalized with Au, were electrically characterized using DC current-voltage (DC-IV) measurements. The measurements showed that bare, undecorated DNA NTs behaved as an insulator, whereas linear, ohmic conductivity was observed for Au enhanced Au decorated NTs. Resistances varied between 60 Ω to 8 MΩ after 15 minutes of electroless Au deposition. After SEM imaging, a decrease in resistances was recorded for several Au enhanced AuNP DNA NTs with final resistances ranging from ~48 Ω to ~170 Ω. DNA origami NTs were also conductive with linear, ohmic behavior and resistances in the MΩ range after 9 minutes of Au enhancement. These results show that by functionalizing the DNA origami NT with AuNPs or Au clusters and increasing the size of the Au, a conductive DNA origami NT could be fabricated. Au-functionalized DNA origami NTs with tunable conductivity may have a variety of electronic and optoelectronic device applications.