Statistical evidence of strain induced breaking of metallic point contacts
Université Aix Marseille, CNRS, CINAM UMR 7325, 13288 Marseille Cedex 9, France
Received: 16 January 2013
Received in final form: 8 March 2013
Published online: 3 June 2013
A scanning tunneling microscopy in break junction regime and a mechanically controllable break junction are used to acquire thousands of conductance-elongation curves by stretching until breaking and re-connecting Au junctions. From a robust statistical analysis performed on large sets of experiments, parameters such as lifetime, elongation and occurrence probabilities are extracted. The analysis of results obtained for different stretching speeds of the electrodes indicates that the breaking mechanism of di- and mono-atomic junction is identical, and that the junctions undergo atomic rearrangement during their stretching and at the moment of breaking.
Key words: Mesoscopic and Nanoscale Systems
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag, 2013