Non-equilibrium quantum theory for nanodevices based on the Feynman-Vernon influence functional

Jinshuang Jin, Matisse Wei Yuan Tu, Wei Min Zhang*, Yi Jing Yan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

102 Scopus citations


In this paper, we present a non-equilibrium quantum theory for transient electron dynamics in nanodevices based on the Feynman-Vernon influence functional. Applying the exact master equation for nanodevices we recently developed to the more general case in which all the constituents of a device vary in time in response to time-dependent external voltages, we obtained non-perturbatively the transient quantum transport theory in terms of the reduced density matrix. The theory enables us to study transient quantum transport in nanostructures with back-reaction effects from the contacts, with non-Markovian dissipation and decoherence being fully taken into account. For a simple illustration, we apply the theory to a single-electron transistor subjected to ac bias voltages. The non-Markovian memory structure and the nonlinear response functions describing transient electron transport are obtained.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number083013
JournalNew Journal of Physics
StatePublished - 6 Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes


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