Illumination of atoms by resonant lasers can pump electrons into a coherent superposition of hyperfine levels which can no longer absorb the light. Such superposition is known as a dark state, because fluorescent light emission is then suppressed. Here we report an all-electric analogue of this destructive interference effect in a carbon nanotube quantum dot. The dark states are a coherent superposition of valley (angular momentum) states which are decoupled from either the drain or the source leads. Their emergence is visible in asymmetric current−voltage characteristics, with missing current steps and current suppression which depend on the polarity of the applied source-drain bias. Our results demonstrate coherent-population trapping by all-electric means in an artificial atom.
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