This project is funded by the Chemical Structure, Dynamics and Mechanisms of the Chemistry division. The project investigates the properties of charged organic molecules (organic ions) on metal surfaces. The fundamental studies performed in the group of Professor B.J Hinch at Rutgers University, are aimed at understanding how ionic molecules can be strongly bound to metal surfaces, and yet also display high mobilities on the surfaces. Understanding mechanisms behind the motion of molecules along surfaces is of significance to lubrication processes, as well as to the formation of ordered molecular films that can be employed in molecular electronic devices. International and interdisciplinary collaborations are also underway to develop respectively theoretical understanding and electronic characterization of the interfaces.
The program realizes ionically-bound planar aromatic chemisorbates, on electronically significant Cu, Ag and Au surfaces, through exposures of volatile non-aromatic molecular precursors. Thermal stability and hydrogenation processes are studied with temperature programmed desorption. Diffusivities, mutual interaction strengths, correlations of dynamic motion, lateral ordering, are explored with helium atom scattering. DFT calculations performed in collaboration with Prof. Steve Jenkins, (Cambridge, UK.) elucidate the potential energy surfaces of the mobile species and anticipated electronic structure. Valence shell and core level spectra studies are undertaken in collaboration with Prof. Robert Bartynski, (Physics Dept., Rutgers University.) A new ionizer design for time-of-flight He energy analysis is being developed. This technology has applications in all time-resolved mass spectroscopies. The experiment design, measurements, local and international collaborative projects, and instrumental development present challenging training experiences at all levels of study. Broader outreach programs include involvement of high school students in applications of new instrumentation, and development of future collaborative projects with emerging academic research programs.
Aromatic Hydrocarbons; Binding; Charge; Chemical Structure; Chemistry; Collaborations; design; Development; electronic structure; Electronics; experience; Funding; Future; Helium; High School Student; Hydrogenation; instrumentation; interdisciplinary collaboration; International; Ions; Lateral; Lubrication; Mass Spectrum Analysis; Measurement; Metals; Molecular; molecular film; Motion; outreach program; Physics; Potential Energy; Process; professor; programs; Property; Research; research study; Surface; Technology; Temperature; Time; Training; Universities