Transport in one-dimensional Coulomb gases: From ion channels to nanopores

A. Kamenev, J. Zhang, A. I. Larkin, B. I. Shklovskii

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


We consider a class of systems where, due to the large mismatch of dielectric constants, the Coulomb interaction is approximately one-dimensional. Examples include ion channels in lipid membranes and water filled nanopores in silicon films. Charge transport across such systems possesses the activation behavior associated with the large electrostatic self-energy of a charge placed inside the channel. We show here that the activation barrier exhibits non-trivial dependence on the salt concentration in the surrounding water solution and on the length and radius of the channel.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-161
Number of pages33
JournalPhysica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to A.L. Efros, M.M. Fogler, L.I. Glazman, A.Yu. Grosberg, A. Meller, S. Teber, Ch. Tian and M. Voloshin for numerous useful discussions. A.K. is supported by the A.P. Sloan foundation and the NSF Grant DMR-0405212. A.I.L. is supported by NSF Grants No. DMR-0120702 and DMR-0439026. B.I.S is supported by NSG Grant DMI-0210844.


  • Activation barrier
  • Charge transport
  • Ion channel
  • Nanopore
  • One-dimensional Coulomb gas


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