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Effect of quantized conductivity on the anomalous photon emission radiated from atomic-size point contacts

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posted on 2023-11-30, 18:23 authored by Mickaël Buret, Igor V. Smetanin, Alexander V. Uskov, Gérard Colas des Francs, Alexandre Bouhelier
We observe anomalous visible to near-infrared electromagnetic radiation emitted from electrically driven atomic-size point contacts. We show that the number of photons released strongly depends on the quantized conductance steps of the contact. Counter-intuitively, the light intensity features an exponential decay dependence with the injected electrical power. We propose an analytical model for the light emission considering an out-of-equilibrium electron distribution. We treat photon emission as bremsstrahlung process resulting from hot electrons colliding with the metal boundary and a find qualitative accord with the experimental data.

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