The phenomenon of Fano resonance is ubiquitous in a large variety of wave scattering systems, where the resonance profile is typically asymmetric. Whether the parameter characterizing the asymmetry should be complex or real is an issue of great experimental interest. Using coherent quantum transport as a paradigm and taking into account of the collective contribution from all available scattering channels, we derive a universal formula for the Fano-resonance profile. We show that our formula bridges naturally the traditional Fano formulas with complex and real asymmetry parameters, indicating that the two types of formulas are fundamentally equivalent (except for an offset). The connection also reveals a clear footprint for the conductance resonance during a dephasing process. Therefore, the emergence of complex asymmetric parameter when fitting with experimental data needs to be properly interpreted. Furthermore, we have provided a theory for the width of the resonance, which relates explicitly the width to the degree of localization of the close-by eigenstates and the corresponding coupling matrices or the self-energies caused by the leads. Our work not only resolves the issue about the nature of the asymmetry parameter, but also provides deeper physical insights into the origin of Fano resonance. Since the only assumption in our treatment is that the transport can be described by the Green's function formalism, our results are also valid for broad disciplines including scattering problems of electromagnetic waves, acoustics, and seismology. (C) 2015 Author(s). All article content, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
- electronic transport
- quantum dots
- Mathematical Sciences (Research Theme)
- School of Natural & Computing Sciences, Physics - Sixth Century Chair in Nonlinear & Complex Systems
- Institute for Complex Systems and Mathematical Biology (ICSMB)