Conductance hysteresis and inelastic excitations at hydrogen decorated cerium atoms and clusters in a tunnel junction

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Research units

  • Institut universitaire de France
  • CNRS/IN2P3
  • Université de Strasbourg


Voltage-controlled conductance and switching induced by single molecules or atoms are ideally studied in scanning tunneling microscope (STM) tunnel junctions. While the objects under consideration are mostly used in their original form, little is known of the possibilities of in situ adjustments of their properties. Here, we evidence properties of a tunnel junction made of a Ce atom/cluster built by atomic manipulation on Au(111) at a temperature of 4.6 K in the presence of H2. The conductance through the object is characterized by a switching voltage corresponding to an opening or closing of an inelastic electron tunneling conductance channel at 50 mV for a Ce atom and 140 mV for a Ce cluster and by charging. We demonstrate that the electronic properties of an STM junction can be engineered in a simple way by in situ guiding of the H2 pinning at an atomic cluster.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3171–3178
Number of pages8
JournalNano Research
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Ce clusters, conductance hysteresis, inelastic electron tunneling spectroscopy (IETS), scanning tunneling microscope (STM)/scanning tunneling spectroscopy (STS), switching

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