Exploring the Tilt-Angle Dependence of electron tunneling across Molecular junction of Self-Assembled Alkanethiols
Publication: Research - peer-review › Journal article – Annual report year: 2009
Electronic transport mechanisms in molecular junctions are investigated by a combination of first-principles calculations and current−voltage measurements of several well-characterized structures. We study self-assembled layers of alkanethiols grown on Au(111) and form tunnel junctions by contacting the molecular layers with the tip of a conductive force microscope. Measurements done under low-load conditions permit us to obtain reliable tilt-angle and molecular length dependencies of the low-bias conductance through the alkanethiol layers. The observed dependence on tilt-angle is stronger for the longer molecular chains. Our calculations confirm the observed trends and explain them as a result of two mechanisms, namely, a previously proposed intermolecular tunneling enhancement as well as a hitherto overlooked tilt-dependent molecular gate effect.
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