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A Cooper pair sighted in a single molecule

from University of Wisconsin Synchrotron Research Center

In work published in Physical Review Letters, researchers at the University of Wisconsin's Synchrotron Research Center outline their discovery that electrons can form Cooper pairs in some aromatic molecules as small as benzene. The benzene ring allows the electrons, when the molecule absorbs a photon with a certain amount of energy, to flow around in a ring-shaped orbital where they can form a 2-electron pseudo particle just like a Cooper pair. Aromaticity does not seem to be the enabling factor as the phenomena also exists in larger benzenelike molecule, like naphthalene and anthracene, but not so much for pyrrole, a heterocyclic aromatic compound with 5-atom ring. Cooper pairs have been found in graphene, so this new result provides a reductionist model for studying Cooper pair formation and maybe even superconductivity at the single molecule level. more


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