Ultrasharp Crossover from Quantum to Classical Decay in a Quantum Dot Flanked by a Double-Barrier Tunneling Structure

Research paper by Denis A. Gorokhov, Rava A. da Silveira

Indexed on: 01 Aug '03Published on: 01 Aug '03Published in: Physics - Mesoscopic Systems and Quantum Hall Effect


The decay of metastable states is dominated by quantum tunneling at low temperatures and by thermal activation at high temperatures. The escape rate of a particle out of a square well is calculated within a semi-classical approximation and exhibits an `ultrasharp' crossover: a kink in the decay rate separates a purely quantum regime at low temperatures from a purely thermal regime at high temperatures. An experimental system -- a quantum dot supplemented by a semiconductor heterostructure -- that may be used to check the prediction, along with necessary experimental conditions, are described.