Coulomb staircase in an asymmetrically coupled quantum dot

George McArdle, Rose Davies, Igor V Lerner*, Igor Valery Yurkevich

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We investigate the Coulomb blockade in quantum dots asymmetrically coupled to the leads for an arbitrary voltage bias focusing on the regime where electrons do not thermalise during their dwell time in the dot. By solving the quantum kinetic equation, we show that the current-voltage characteristics are crucially dependent on the ratio of the Fermi energy to charging energy on the dot. In the standard regime when the Fermi energy is large, there is a Coulomb staircase which is practically the same as in the thermalised regime. In the opposite case of the large charging energy, we identify a new regime in which only one step is left in the staircase, and we anticipate experimental confirmation of this finding.

Original languageEnglish
Article number475302
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physics Condensed Matter
Issue number47
Early online date29 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - 29 Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023, The Author(s). Published by IOP Publishing LtdOriginal Content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence []. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI.

The authors gratefully acknowledge support from EPSRC under the Grant EP/R029075/1 (I V L) and from the Leverhulme Trust under the Grant RPG-2019-317 (I V Y).


  • quantum dots
  • many-body localisation
  • non-equilibrium systems
  • Keldysh techniques
  • Coulomb blockade


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