Electron tunneling through alkanedithiol molecules

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Progress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE, 2006, 6036
Issue Date:
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We report on first principles calculations of the tunneling current across n-alkanedithiol molecules (n = 4,6,8,10,12) sandwiched between two Au {111} electrodes. The conductance drops exponentially with increased chain length with decay parameter βn= 0.9. The results are compared with scanning tunneling microscopy measurements on decanedithiol and with other n-alkanedithiol (n = 6,8,10) results in the literature. The theoretical results are found to be an order of magnitude larger than experimental values but follow the same trend. However, two additional, more realistic, geometries are modeled by changing the bond type and by combining the first-principles results with a Wentzel-Kramer-Brillouin (WKB) expression for tunneling across the air gap that is invariably present during scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) measurements. These results are more compatible with the experimental data.
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