Environmentally activated tunneling events in a hybrid single-electron box

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Researchers

Research units

  • VTT MIKES Metrology

Abstract

We have measured individual tunneling events and Coulomb step shapes in single-electron boxes with opaque superconductor–normal metal tunnel junctions. We observe anomalous broadening of the Coulomb step with decreasing temperature in a manner that is consistent with activation of first-order tunneling events by an external dissipative electromagnetic environment. We demonstrate that the rates for energetically unfavorable tunneling events saturate to finite values at low temperatures, and that the saturation level can be suppressed by more than an order of magnitude by a capacitive shunt near the device. The findings are important in assessing the performance limits of any single-electronic device. In particular, master-equation-based simulations show that the electromagnetic environment realized in the capacitively shunted devices allows for a metrologically accurate charge pump based on hybrid tunnel junctions.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Article number155443
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalPhysical Review B
Volume82
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2010
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • single-electron box, tunneling events

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