We have studied quantum wires using the Green’s function technique within density-functional theory, calculating electronic structures and conductances for different wire lengths, temperatures, and bias voltages. For short wires, i.e., quantum point contacts, the zero-bias conductance shows as a function of the gate voltage and at a finite temperature a plateau at around 0.7G0. (G0=2e2/h is the quantum conductance.) The behavior, which is caused in our mean-field model by spontaneous spin polarization in the constriction, is reminiscent of the so-called 0.7 anomaly observed in experiments. In our model the temperature and the wire length affect the conductance–gate-voltage curves similarly as in experiments.
- quantum wire
- spin polarization