The interaction of organic adsorbate vibrations with substrate lattice waves in methyl-Si(111)-(1 × 1)

Ryan D. Brown, Zachary M. Hund, Davide Campi, Leslie E. O'Leary, Nathan S. Lewis, M. Bernasconi, G. Benedek, S. J. Sibener

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8 Citations (Scopus)


A combined helium atom scattering and density functional perturbation theory study has been performed to elucidate the surface phonon dispersion relations for both the CH3-Si(111)-(1 × 1) and CD 3-Si(111)-(1 × 1) surfaces. The combination of experimental and theoretical methods has allowed characterization of the interactions between the low energy vibrations of the adsorbate and the lattice waves of the underlying substrate, as well as characterization of the interactions between neighboring methyl groups, across the entire wavevector resolved vibrational energy spectrum of each system. The Rayleigh wave was found to hybridize with the surface rocking libration near the surface Brillouin zone edge at both the M̄-point and K̄-point. The calculations indicated that the range of possible energies for the potential barrier to the methyl rotation about the Si-C axis is sufficient to prevent the free rotation of the methyl groups at a room temperature interface. The density functional perturbation theory calculations revealed several other surface phonons that experienced mode-splitting arising from the mutual interaction of adjacent methyl groups. The theory identified a Lucas pair that exists just below the silicon optical bands. For both the CH3- and CD3-terminated Si(111) surfaces, the deformations of the methyl groups were examined and compared to previous experimental and theoretical work on the nature of the surface vibrations. The calculations indicated a splitting of the asymmetric deformation of the methyl group near the zone edges due to steric interactions of adjacent methyl groups. The observed shifts in vibrational energies of the -CD 3 groups were consistent with the expected effect of isotopic substitution in this system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number024702
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jul 14 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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