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VOLUME 81 (2005) | ISSUE 6 | PAGE 341
Variable range cotunneling and conductivity of a granular metal
The Efros-Shklovskii (E-S) law for the conductivity of granular metals is interpreted as a result of a variable range cotunneling process. The cotunneling between distant resonant grains is predominantly elastic at low T \leq T_c, while it is inelastic (i.e., accompanied by creation of electron-hole pairs on a string of intermediate non-resonant grains) at T
\geq T_c. The corresponding E-S temperature TES in the latter case is slightly (logarithmically) T-dependent. The magnetoresistance in the two cases is different: it may be relatively strong and negative at T \ll T_c, while at T>Tc it is suppressed due to inelastic processes which destroy the interference.