Tunneling time probed by quantum shot noise

Abstract : In typical metallic tunnel junctions, the tunneling events occur on a femtosecond timescale. An estimation of this time requires current measurements at optical frequencies and remains challenging. However, it has been known for more than 40 years that as soon as the bias voltage exceeds one volt, the junction emits infrared radiation as an electrically driven optical antenna. We demonstrate here that the photon emission results from the fluctuations of the current inside the tunneling barrier. Photon detection is then equivalent to a measurement of the current fluctuations at optical frequencies, allowing to probe the tunneling time. Based on this idea, we perform optical spectroscopy and electronic current fluctuation measurements in the far from equilibrium regime. Our experimental data are in very good agreement with theoretical predictions based on the Landauer Büttiker scattering formalism. By combining the optics and the electronics, we directly estimate the so-called traversal time.
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Contributor : Julien Gabelli <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, November 5, 2019 - 5:07:17 PM
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Pierre Février, Julien Gabelli. Tunneling time probed by quantum shot noise. Nature Communications, Nature Publishing Group, 2018, 9 (1), ⟨10.1038/s41467-018-07369-6⟩. ⟨hal-02349574⟩



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