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Selective Cooperative Self-Assembly between an Organic Semiconductor and Native Adatoms on Cu(110)

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journal contribution
posted on 10.12.2015, 00:00 by Bret Maughan, Percy Zahl, Peter Sutter, Oliver L. A. Monti
We investigate molecular adsorption, film growth, and self-assembly for titanyl phthalocyanine (TiOPc) on Cu(110) in ultrahigh vacuum using low-temperature scanning tunneling microscopy (LT-STM). Three unique molecular adsorption configurations are identified, two of which are referred to as “O-down” and one as “O-up”, each differing in the molecular registry with the surface. Even though disorder dominates film growth to coverages in excess of 1 monolayer in the native thin film, extended self-assembled 1D configuration-dependent nanoribbons form upon annealing of the film. The STM data reveal that the nanoribbons consist of “O-down” TiOPc and a Cu skeleton, anchoring cooperatively on the Cu(110) terraces. Agent-based simulations show that nanoribbons grow and elongate due to anisotropic adatom attachment rates along the two major surface directions. The study reveals the importance of molecule–adatom interactions for novel approaches toward nanostructuring organic semiconductor/metal interfaces.