Image distortions of a partially fluorinated hydrocarbon molecule in atomic force microscopy with carbon monoxide terminated tips

Nikolaj Moll, Bruno Schuler, Shigeki Kawai, Feng Xu, Lifen Peng, Akihiro Orita, Junzo Otera, Alessandro Curioni, Mathias Neu, Jascha Repp, Gerhard Meyer, Leo Gross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations

Abstract

The underlying mechanisms of image distortions in atomic force microscopy (AFM) with CO-terminated tips are identified and studied in detail. AFM measurements of a partially fluorinated hydrocarbon molecule recorded with a CO-terminated tip are compared with state-of-the-art ab initio calculations. The hydrogenated and fluorinated carbon rings in the molecule appear different in size, which primarily originates from the different extents of their π-electrons. Further, tilting of the CO at the tip, induced by van der Waals forces, enlarges the apparent size of parts of the molecule by up to 50%. Moreover, the CO tilting in response to local Pauli repulsion causes a significant sharpening of the molecule bonds in AFM imaging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6127-6131
Number of pages5
JournalNano letters
Volume14
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 12 2014

Keywords

  • NC-AFM
  • Single molecule

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