Highly excited electronic image states of metallic nanorings


We study electronic image states around a metallic nanoring and show that the interplay between the attractive polarization force and a repulsive centrifugal force gives rise to Rydberg-like image states trapped several nanometers away from the surface. The nanoring is modeled as a perfectly conducting isolated torus whose classical electrostatic image potential is derived analytically. The image states are computed via a two-dimensional finite-difference scheme as solutions of the effective Schrödinger equation describing the outer electron subject to this image potential. These findings demonstrate not only the existence of detached image states around nanorings but allow us also to provide general criteria on the ring geometry, i.e., the aspect ratio of the torus, that need to be fulfilled in order to support such states.

The Journal of Chemical Physics