Analyzing the motion of benzene on {111}: Single molecule statistics from scanning probe images

Brent A. Mantooth, E. Charles H Sykes, Patrick Han, Amanda M. Moore, Zachary J. Donhauser, Vincent H. Crespi, Paul S. Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Analyses of time-resolved sequences of molecular-resolution images allow the characterization and quantification of site-specific interactions and dynamics of adsorbed species. We have used scanning tunneling microscopy to probe and to quantify the weak substrate-mediated interactions in benzene overlayers on Au{111} at 4 K. We observed that benzene molecules exhibit three types of motion; two-dimensional (2D) desorption, 2D adsorption, and simultaneous cooperative shifts (2.4 ± 0.6 Å) of many molecules in molecular cascades. Correlating the probability of 2D desorption with the number of nearest neighbors of the desorbing molecules enables the calculation of the magnitude of the adsorbate-adsorbate, substrate-mediated interactions. We observed molecular cascades in chains of up to 12 molecules simultaneously moving in the same direction. These molecular cascades arise from translation of the overlayer structure and are highly correlated with 2D desorption and 2D adsorption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6167-6182
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number17
StatePublished - May 3 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • General Energy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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