Large Conductance Variations in a Mechanosensitive Single-Molecule Junction

Stefani, Davide and Weiland, Kevin J. and Skripnik, Maxim and Hsu, Chunwei and Perrin, Mickael L. and Mayor, Marcel and Pauly, Fabian and van der Zant, Herre S. J.. (2018) Large Conductance Variations in a Mechanosensitive Single-Molecule Junction. Nano Letters, 18 (9). pp. 5981-5988.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/68441/

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An appealing feature of molecular electronics is the possibility of inducing changes in the orbital structure through external stimuli. This can provide functionality on the single-molecule level that can be employed for sensing or switching purposes if the associated conductance changes are sizable upon application of the stimuli. Here, we show that the room-temperature conductance of a spring-like molecule can be mechanically controlled up to an order of magnitude by compressing or elongating it. Quantum-chemistry calculations indicate that the large conductance variations are the result of destructive quantum interference effects between the frontier orbitals that can be lifted by applying either compressive or tensile strain to the molecule. When periodically modulating the electrode separation, a conductance modulation at double the driving frequency is observed, providing a direct proof for the presence of quantum interference. Furthermore, oscillations in the conductance occur when the stress built up in the molecule is high enough to allow the anchoring groups to move along the surface in a stick-slip-like fashion. The mechanical control of quantum interference effects results in the largest-gauge factor reported for single-molecule devices up to now, which may open the door for applications in, e.g., a nanoscale mechanosensitive sensing device that is functional at room temperature.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Chemie
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Chemie > Chemie > Molecular Devices and Materials (Mayor)
UniBasel Contributors:Mayor, Marcel and Weiland, Kevin
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:American Chemical Society
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:07 Jul 2020 07:31
Deposited On:03 Jul 2019 08:09

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