A Single-Molecule Chemical Reaction Studied by High-Resolution Atomic Force Microscopy and Scanning Tunneling Microscopy Induced Light Emission

Atomic force microscopy (AFM) as well as scanning tunneling microscopy induced light emission (STM-LE) are, each on their own, powerful tools used to investigate a large variety of properties of single molecules adsorbed on a surface. However, accessing both structural information by AFM as well as optical information by STM-LE on the same molecule so far remains elusive. We present a combined high-resolution AFM and STM-LE study on single metal-oxide phthalocyanines. Using atomic manipulation, the molecules can be deliberately reduced. We demonstrate structure elucidation and adsorption geometry determination of single molecules with atomic resolution combined with optical characterization by STM-LE and the possibility of investigating the change in a molecule’s exciton emission intensity by a chemical reaction.

KEYWORDS: atomic force microscopy, scanning tunneling microscopy, scanning tunneling microscopy induced light emission, on-surface chemical reaction, atom manipulation, phthalocyanine, excitonic emission

By: Katharina Kaiser, Leo Gross, Fabian Schulz

Published in: ACS Nano, volume 13, (no 6), pages 10.1021/acsnano.9b01852 in 2019

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