Akitoshi Shiotari, Bo Hong Liu, Simon Jaekel, Leonhard Grill, Shamil Shaikhutdinov, Hans-Joachim Freund, Martin Wolf, and Takashi Kumagai:
J. Phys. Chem. C 118 (47), 27428–27435 (2014), pp. 8;
We have studied the local structure of ultrathin ZnO layers grown on Ag(111) by the reactive deposition method using low-temperature scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and noncontact atomic force microscopy (nc-AFM) at 5 K. The characteristic Moiré patterns arising from the lattice mismatch between the ZnO(0001) layers and Ag(111) appear in STM, but it is not pronounced in nc-AFM images. This indicates an atomically flat geometrical structure of the ZnO layer and a dominant contribution of the electronic state to the Moiré patterns imaged by STM. We found that the apparent height of STM for the ZnO layers strongly depends on the bias voltage and becomes comparable with that of nc-AFM when the bias voltage is below the conduction band edge of the ZnO layers. The ZnO layers with the STM (AFM) apparent height of 3.8 (4.0) ± 0.3 and 5.8 (6.1) ± 0.3 Å were observed. On the other hand, mapping the onset of the resonance state of the ZnO layer by scanning tunneling spectroscopy provides a basis for determining its thickness. Our results suggest that the ZnO layers on Ag(111) grow predominantly as bi- and trilayers under the conditions used.
The original publication is available by link DOI: 10.1021/jp509013p