Mechanical Tuning of Through-Molecule Conductance in a Conjugated Calix[4]pyrrole

Davide Stefani, Mickael Perrin, Cristian Gutiérrez-Cerón, Albert C. Aragonès, Jacqueline Labra-Muñoz, Rodrigo D.C. Carrasco, Yoshitaka Matsushita, Zdenek Futera, Jan Labuta, Thien H. Ngo, Katsuhiko Ariga, Ismael Díez-Pérez, Herre S.J. van der Zant, Diana Dulić*, Jonathan P. Hill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
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A conformationally flexible calix[4]pyrrole possessing a conjugated electronic structure (an N-substituted oxoporphyrinogen (OxP) related to porphyrin) was used to investigate the influence of mechanical stretching on the single-molecule conductance of these molecules using the mechanically-controlled break junction (MCBJ) technique. The results show that the molecule can be immobilized in a single-molecule break junction configuration, giving rise to different behaviours. These include step-like features in the conductance vs. displacement traces as well as conductance traces that exhibit a slower decay (‘downhill’ traces) than measured for direct tunneling. The latter class of traces can be associated with the mechanical manipulation (i. e., stretching) of the molecule with inter-electrode distances as long as 2 nm. Density functional theory (DFT) calculations reveal that OxP molecules are stable under stretching in the length regime studied.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6473-6478
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Accepted Author Manuscript


  • calix[4]pyrrole
  • mechanically-controlled break junction
  • oxoporphyrinogen
  • single molecule


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