PerspectiveMaterials Science

Quartz on Silicon

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Science  17 May 2013:
Vol. 340, Issue 6134, pp. 818-819
DOI: 10.1126/science.1236752

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The on-chip integration of piezoelectric quartz would be highly beneficial for chemical sensing and accurate timing circuits. However, to date, it has not been possible to achieve single-orientation, single-variant silicon dioxide films with high piezoelectric activity. On page 827 of this issue, Carretero-Genevrier et al. (1) demonstrate the formation of oriented piezoelectrically active α-quartz thin films directly on silicon. Although the growth mechanism and piezoelectric properties require fuller development, their approach may be an attractive route for developing integrated piezoelectric devices.