Stretching-Induced Conductance Increase in a Spin-Crossover Molecule

Riccardo Frisenda, Gero D. Harzmann, Jose A. Celis Gil, Joseph M. Thijssen, Marcel Mayor, Herre S J Van Der Zant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate transport through mechanically triggered single-molecule switches that are based on the coordination sphere-dependent spin state of FeII-species. In these molecules, in certain junction configurations the relative arrangement of two terpyridine ligands within homoleptic FeII-complexes can be mechanically controlled. Mechanical pulling may thus distort the FeII coordination sphere and eventually modify their spin state. Using the movable nanoelectrodes in a mechanically controlled break-junction at low temperature, current-voltage measurements at cryogenic temperatures support the hypothesized switching mechanism based on the spin-crossover behavior. A large fraction of molecular junctions formed with the spin-crossover-active FeII-complex displays a conductance increase for increasing electrode separation and this increase can reach 1-2 orders of magnitude. Theoretical calculations predict a stretching-induced spin transition in the FeII-complex and a larger transmission for the high-spin configuration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4733-4737
Number of pages5
JournalNano Letters: a journal dedicated to nanoscience and nanotechnology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2016


  • density functional theory
  • molecular spintronics
  • nanoscale transport
  • Spin-crossover switch


Dive into the research topics of 'Stretching-Induced Conductance Increase in a Spin-Crossover Molecule'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this