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Keywords:

  • conjugated molecules;
  • electron transport;
  • interfaces;
  • molecular electronics;
  • single-molecule studies

Abstract

Understanding electron transport through a single molecule bridging between metal electrodes is a central issue in the field of molecular electronics. This review covers the fabrication and electron-transport properties of single π-conjugated molecule junctions, which include benzene, fullerene, and π-stacked molecules. The metal/molecule interface plays a decisive role in determining the stability and conductivity of single-molecule junctions. The effect of the metal–molecule contact on the conductance of the single π-conjugated molecule junction is reviewed. The characterization of the single benzene molecule junction is also discussed using inelastic electron tunneling spectroscopy and shot noise. Finally, electron transport through the π-stacked system using π-stacked aromatic molecules enclosed within self-assembled coordination cages is reviewed. The electron transport in the π-stacked systems is found to be efficient at the single-molecule level, thus providing insight into the design of conductive materials.