Phase transformations of 4,4'-biphenyldicarboxylic acid on Cu(001)

Daniel Schwarz, Raoul van Gastel, Henricus J.W. Zandvliet, Bene Poelsema

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12 Citations (Scopus)


The growth and structure of 4,4′-biphenyldicarboxylic-acid (BDA) on Cu(001) at temperatures between 300 and 400 K was studied by low energy electron microscopy and μ-LEED. First, the adsorbed BDA molecules form a disordered dilute phase. Once this phase reaches a sufficiently high density, a crystalline phase nucleates, in which the molecules form a hydrogen-bonded two-dimensional (2D) supramolecular c(8×8) network. By a careful analysis of the bright-field image intensity, we can measure the density in the dilute phase, which is up to 30% of that in the crystalline phase. From the respective equilibrium densities at different temperatures, we determine the 2D phase diagram and extract a cohesive energy of 0.35 eV. We also analyze the island decay behavior and estimate the BDA molecule diffusion constants. Steps are found to be highly transparent for diffusing BDA molecules. In the temperature range of 362–400 K, we find chemical diffusion constants between 850–1700 nm2 s−1
Original languageEnglish
Article number235419
Pages (from-to)235419-
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review B (Condensed Matter and Materials Physics)
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • IR-81102
  • METIS-287283


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