A summary of photo- and electrochemical surface modifications applied on single-crystalline chemical vapour deposition (CVD) diamond films is given. The covalently bonded formation of amine- and phenyl-linker molecule layers is characterized using x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy (AFM), cyclic voltammetry and field-effect transistor characterization experiments. Amine- and phenyl-layers are very different with respect to formation, growth, thickness and molecule arrangement. We detect a single-molecular layer of amine-linker molecules on diamond with a density of about 10 14 cm −2 (10% of carbon bonds). Amine molecules are bonded only on initially H-terminated surface areas to carbon. In the case of electrochemical deposition of phenyl-layers, multi-layer formation is detected due to three-dimensional (3D) growths. This gives rise to the formation of typically 25 Å thick layers. The electrochemical grafting of boron-doped diamond works on H-terminated and oxidized surfaces. After reacting such films with hetero-bifunctional crosslinker molecules, thiol-modified ss-DNA markers are bonded to the organic system. Application of fluorescence and AFM on hybridized DNA films shows dense arrangements with densities of up to 10 13 cm −2 . The DNA is tilted by an angle of about 35° with respect to the diamond surface. Shortening the bonding time of thiol-modified ss-DNA to 10 min causes a decrease of DNA density to about 10 12 cm −2 . Application of AFM scratching experiments shows threshold removal forces of around 75 nN for DNA bonded on phenyl-linker molecules and of about 45 nN for DNA bonded to amine-linker molecules. DNA sensor applications using Fe(CN 6 ) 3−/4− mediator redox molecules, impedance spectroscopy and DNA-field effect transistor devices performances are introduced and discussed.
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