The diffusion of Co atoms in the Cu(001) surface has been studied using Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM). Like other impurities in the Cu(001) surface, the diffusion of Co is mediated by single surface vacancies. STM images reveal that diffusion of the embedded atoms takes place through multi-atom jumps separated by long time intervals, which is characteristic for this type of diffusion. The jump length and frequency are measured to establish the nature of the interaction between surface vacancies and the embedded Co atoms and to extract the relevant formation and diffusion energies.
- Roughness and topography
- Scanning tunneling microscopy (STM)
- Surface structure