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Application of low temperature scanning electron microscopy for the investigation of single-electron tunneling circuits

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  • A. V. Ustinov
  • S. Lemke
  • T. Doderer
  • R. P. Huebener
  • L. S. Kuzmin
  • Yu A. Pashkin
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/12/1994
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Applied Physics
Issue number1
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)376-384
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We present the first experimental results on a spatially-resolved investigation of a SET (single-electron tunneling) circuit using the method of low temperature scanning electron microscopy. The new technique can be operated with short electron beam pulses down to 1 μs and small beam current below 1 pA, which gives the value of the charge per pulse as low as one elementary charge. By recording the circuit voltage response to the modulated electron beam irradiation as a function of the beam coordinates on the circuit, we were able to image the potentials of different parts of the circuit. For a SET-transistor which displayed the Coulomb blockade we found evidence of memory-effects due to charge trapping in the vicinity of one of the junctions. Further possible applications of our method for the spatially resolved study of single-electron circuits are suggested.