Observing Reactions via Flow Injection Scanning Tunneling Microscopy
The scanning tunneling microscope (STM) is used to view conductive and semiconductive surfaces to obtain topographic and structural information. A number of literature reports describe molecules absorbed on surfaces. We describe a flow injection system which allows imaging before, during, and after a surface reaction. The flow injection system consists of a flow cell in which a solution is pumped over a sample via a flow injector and a peristaltic pump during STM imaging. Results indicate that atomic imaging can be maintained under a rapidly-flowing solution stream. This system can provide a way to observe reactions occurring on surfaces. Preliminary applications of the system that include the etching of a metal surface, attachment of thiols on a gold surface, and attachment of polymers onto highly ordered pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) step defects are described.
KeywordsScanning Tunneling Microscope Peristaltic Pump Flow Cell Gold Surface Tunneling Microscopy
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