Spin-dependent electron transmission model for chiral molecules in mesoscopic devices

Xu Yang*, Caspar H. van der Wal, Bart J. van Wees

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)
147 Downloads (Pure)


Various device-based experiments have indicated that electron transfer in certain chiral molecules may be spin dependent, a phenomenon known as the chiral induced spin selectivity (CISS) effect. However, due to the complexity of these devices and a lack of theoretical understanding, it is not always clear to what extent the chiral character of the molecules actually contributes to the magnetic-field-dependent signals in these experiments. To address this issue, we report here an electron transmission model that evaluates the role of the CISS effect in two-terminal and multiterminal linear-regime electron transport experiments. Our model reveals that for the CISS effect, the chirality-dependent spin transmission is accompanied by a spin-flip electron reflection process. Furthermore, we show that more than two terminals are required in order to probe the CISS effect in the linear regime. In addition, we propose two types of multiterminal nonlocal transport measurements that can distinguish the CISS effect from other magnetic-field-dependent signals. Our model provides an effective tool to review and design CISS-related transport experiments, and to enlighten the mechanism of the CISS effect itself.

Original languageEnglish
Article number024418
Number of pages16
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 18-Jan-2019




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