Surface Stress in the Self-Assembly of Alkanethiols On Gold

We report the first study of surface stress changes and kinetics in-situ during the self-assembly of alkanethiols on gold using a micromechanical sensor. Surprisingly, self-assembly is observed to cause compressive surface stress, which closely follows Langmuir-type adsorption kinetics up to monolayer coverage. Quantitatively the stress at monolayer coverage is found to increase linearly with the length of the alkyl chain of the molecule. These observations are interpreted in terms of differences in surface potential.

By: R. Berger, E. Delamarche, H. P. Lang, Ch. Gerber, J. K. Gimzewski

Published in: Science, volume 276, (no 5321), pages 2021-4 in 1997

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