Ground-state spin blockade in a single-molecule junction

J. De Bruijckere, P. Gehring, M. Palacios-Corella, E. Coronado, J. Paaske, P. Hedegård, H. S.J. Van Der Zant

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Abstract

It is known that the quantum mechanical ground state of a nanoscale junction has a significant impact on its electrical transport properties. This becomes particularly important in transistors consisting of a single molecule. Because of strong electron-electron interactions and the possibility of accessing ground states with high spins, these systems are eligible hosts of a current-blockade phenomenon called a ground-state spin blockade. This effect arises from the inability of a charge carrier to account for the spin difference required to enter the junction, as that process would violate the spin selection rules. Here, we present a direct experimental demonstration of a ground-state spin blockade in a high-spin single-molecule transistor. The measured transport characteristics of this device exhibit a complete suppression of resonant transport due to a ground-state spin difference of 3/2 between subsequent charge states. Strikingly, the blockade can be reversibly lifted by driving the system through a magnetic ground-state transition in one charge state, using the tunability offered by both magnetic and electric fields.

Original languageEnglish
Article number197701
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume122
Issue number19
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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    De Bruijckere, J., Gehring, P., Palacios-Corella, M., Coronado, E., Paaske, J., Hedegård, P., & Van Der Zant, H. S. J. (2019). Ground-state spin blockade in a single-molecule junction. Physical Review Letters, 122(19), [197701]. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.197701