Current and noise in a model of an AC-STM molecule-metal junction

Research paper by R. Guyon, T. Jonckheere, V. Mujica, A. Crepieux, T. Martin

Indexed on: 23 Apr '04Published on: 23 Apr '04Published in: Physics - Mesoscopic Systems and Quantum Hall Effect


The transport properties of a simple model for a finite level structure (a molecule or a dot) connected to metal electrodes in an alternating current scanning tunneling microscope (AC-STM) configuration is studied. The finite level structure is assumed to have strong binding properties with the metallic substrate, and the bias between the STM tip and the hybrid metal-molecule interface has both an AC and a DC component. The finite frequency current response and the zero frequency photo-assisted shot noise are computed using the Keldysh technique, and examples for a single site molecule (a quantum dot) and for a two-site molecule are examined. The model may be useful for the interpretation of recent experiments using an AC-STM for the study of both conducting and insulating surfaces, where the third harmonic component of the current is measured. The zero frequency photo-assisted shot noise serves as a useful diagnosis for analyzing the energy level structure of the molecule. The present work motivates the need for further analysis of current fluctuations in electronic molecular transport.