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Keywords:

  • Molecular switches;
  • Monolayers;
  • Optical switches;
  • Photochromic materials;
  • Photoisomerization
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Light-controlled conductance switching of diarylethenes attached to Au(111) is reported (see figure). First, scanning tunneling microscopy is used to demonstrate reversible photoswitching for individual molecules. Second, reversible switching in self-assembled monolayers is established by means of optical spectroscopy.