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Coherent spin dynamics in a helical arrangement of molecular dipoles

  • Received: 13 July 2017 Accepted: 17 September 2017 Published: 22 September 2017
  • Experiments on electron transport through helical molecules have demonstrated the appearance of high spin selectivity, in spite of the rather weak spin-orbit coupling in organic compounds. Theoretical models usually rely on different mechanisms to explain these experiments, such as large spin-orbit coupling, quantum dephasing, the role of metallic contacts, or the interplay between a helicity-induced spin-orbit coupling and a strong dipole electric field. In this work we consider the coherent electron dynamics in the electric field created by the helical arrangement of dipoles of the molecule backbone, giving rise to an effective spin-orbit coupling. We calculate the spin projection onto the helical axis as a figure of merit for the assessment of the spin dynamics in a very long helical molecule. We prove that the spin projection reaches a steady state regime after a short transient. We compare its asymptotic value for different initial conditions, aiming to better understand the origin of the spin selectivity found in experiments.

    Citation: Elena Díaz, Rafael Gutiérrez, Christopher Gaul, Gianaurelio Cuniberti, Francisco Domínguez-Adame. Coherent spin dynamics in a helical arrangement of molecular dipoles[J]. AIMS Materials Science, 2017, 4(5): 1052-1061. doi: 10.3934/matersci.2017.5.1052

    Related Papers:

  • Experiments on electron transport through helical molecules have demonstrated the appearance of high spin selectivity, in spite of the rather weak spin-orbit coupling in organic compounds. Theoretical models usually rely on different mechanisms to explain these experiments, such as large spin-orbit coupling, quantum dephasing, the role of metallic contacts, or the interplay between a helicity-induced spin-orbit coupling and a strong dipole electric field. In this work we consider the coherent electron dynamics in the electric field created by the helical arrangement of dipoles of the molecule backbone, giving rise to an effective spin-orbit coupling. We calculate the spin projection onto the helical axis as a figure of merit for the assessment of the spin dynamics in a very long helical molecule. We prove that the spin projection reaches a steady state regime after a short transient. We compare its asymptotic value for different initial conditions, aiming to better understand the origin of the spin selectivity found in experiments.


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