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Chem Soc Rev. 2015 Feb 21;44(4):889-901. doi: 10.1039/c4cs00242c.

Break junction under electrochemical gating: testbed for single-molecule electronics.

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Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Bern Freiestrasse 3, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland.


Molecular electronics aims to construct functional molecular devices at the single-molecule scale. One of the major challenges is to construct a single-molecule junction and to further manipulate the charge transport through the molecular junction. Break junction techniques, including STM break junctions and mechanically controllable break junctions are considered as testbed to investigate and control the charge transport on a single-molecule scale. Moreover, additional electrochemical gating provides a unique opportunity to manipulate the energy alignment and molecular redox processes for a single-molecule junction. In this review, we start from the technical aspects of the break junction technique, then discuss the molecular structure-conductance correlation derived from break junction studies, and, finally, emphasize electrochemical gating as a promising method for the functional molecular devices.


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