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Theoretical description of the field emission of electrons from nanoscale objects weakly coupled to the cathode is presented. It is shown that the field- emission current increases in a step-like fashion due to single-electron charging which leads to abrupt changes of the effective electric field responsible for the field emission. A detailed consideration of the current-voltage characteristics is carried out for a nanocluster modelled by a metallic spherical particle in the close vicinity of the cathode and for a cylindrical silicon nanowire grown on the cathode surface.
Comment: Published version, 4 pages including 3 figures
Comment: 5 pages, 5 figures; v2: accepted version at PRL
Comment: 10 pages, 4 figures, accepted by Chem. Phys. Lett
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