Ordinary and supernumerary resonant scattering of low energy electrons from the BiCu2(111) surface alloy

Bene Poelsema, Michael S. Altman, Raoul van Gastel, Harold J.W. Zandvliet, Arie van Houselt

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Electron intensity versus energy curves from the ordered substitutional BiCu2(111)-surface alloy, obtained with low energy electron microscopy (LEEM), show distinct unexpected intensity dips under normal incidence conditions. The dips above 10 eV are found to be characteristic of ordinary resonant scattering of electrons. Their positions represent resonant scattering into image potential states, involving scattering along G 10 and G 11 reciprocal lattice vectors. A detailed analysis of additional specular intensity dips at energies below 10 eV demonstrates that these originate from supernumerary resonant scattering, now also along lower symmetry directions, that should be forbidden in this energy range for the perfect crystal. LEEM is highly sensitive to detect these often neglected features which, if not properly disentangled or discarded, hamper its potential to extract the rich information about atomic positions and unoccupied electronic states encoded in very low energy electron scattering.
Original languageEnglish
Article number013024
JournalNew journal of physics
Publication statusPublished - 2017



  • METIS-322059
  • IR-104629

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