Field-Effect Modulation of the Conductance of Single Molecules

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Science  07 Dec 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5549, pp. 2138-2140
DOI: 10.1126/science.1066171

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Field-effect transistors based on two-component self-assembled monolayers of conjugated and insulating molecules were prepared; the conductance through them can be varied by more than three orders of magnitude by changing the applied gate bias. With very small ratios of conjugated to insulating molecules in the two-component monolayer, devices with only a few “electrically active” molecules can be achieved. At low temperatures, the peak channel conductance is quantized in units of 2e 2/h (wheree is the electron charge and h is Planck's constant). This behavior is indicative of transistor action in single molecules. On the basis of such single-molecule transistors, inverter circuits with gain are demonstrated.

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