SCIENTIA SINICA Chimica, Volume 49 , Issue 3 : 492-499(2019) https://doi.org/10.1360/N032018-00214

Surface construction and characterization of carbon nanomaterials

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  • ReceivedSep 20, 2018
  • AcceptedNov 13, 2018
  • PublishedJan 15, 2019


On-surface synthesis has been proposed for constructing carbon nanomaterials in a controllable manner. In this feature article, we introduced our recent works on the synthesis of carbon nanomaterials, including conductive carbon nanowires and graphene-like nanoribbons. The precise atomic structures and electronic properties, as well as the growth mechanism were characterized by combined scanning tunneling microscopy, noncontact atomic force microscopy and density functional theory calculations. At last, the latest progress on surface reaction and synthesis was presented.

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  • Figure 1

    (a) Schematic illustration showing dehalogenative homocoupling of the ditopic molecular precursor, which results in the formation of PPV. (b) STM images showing the formation of PPV chains after deposition of BDBMB molecules on Au(111) held at RT and annealing to ∼400 K. (c) Equally scaled STM image and NC-AFM image recorded by CO-functionalized tip of a single PPV chain onAu(111). (d) STM image of a PPV chain on the Au(111) surface. (e) dI/dV spectra recorded at different sites. The dI/dV spectra were acquired by a lock-in amplifier while the sample bias was modulated by a 553 Hz, 30 mV (r.m.s) (color online).

  • Figure 2

    (a) Dehalogenative homocouplings of TBP and bTBP molecules. Upper: form 1,2-diphenylethyne. Lower: form PAEs (poly-(arylene ethynylene))chains. (b) High-resolution STM image and (c) NC-AFM image of the 1,2-diphenylethyne structure. (d) Large-scale and (e) close-up STM images showing the formation of PAEs molecular chains. Reprinted with permission from reference [23], published by John Wiley and Sons, 2018 (color online).

  • Figure 3

    (a) Coupling of BTCMB to form PPE molecular wires on Cu(111). (b) Structural characterization of PPE molecular wire. A STM image (I=20 pA, V=–0.6 V) and the corresponding (c) NC-AFM image of a nanowire acquired with a CO-functionalized tip. (d) dI/dV spectra taken at different sites of the nanowire and Cu(111) surface. (e) Comparison of calculated density of states (DOS) for PPE in vacuum and on Cu(111) surface (color online).

  • Figure 4

    Direct imaging of reaction intermediates of TCMB coupling on Cu(111). (a) Overview of the reaction pathway for the formation of DPE on Cu(111). (b–d), (e–g) are respectively STM images and DFT-optimized models of the typical intermediates. Scale bars: 300 pm (color online).

  • Figure 5

    (a) Synthetic strategy for graphene-like nanoribbons. (b) STM image of DBTP and Br4-PTCDA molecules co-deposited on Au(111) at RT (V=−2 V, I=2.2 nA) and STM image with overlaid molecular structures. (c) High-resolution STM image with partly overlaid molecular model of the graphene-like nanoribbon (V=−1.6 V, I=0.3 nA). Experimental and simulated AFM images of graphene-like nanoribbons. (d) Constant-height NC-AFM frequency shift image with CO-functionalized tip (oscillation amplitude AOSC=1 Å, V=0 V, z offset −2 Å below STM setpoint: −0.6 V, 20 pA). (e) Constant-height NC-AFM image with partly overlaid ribbon structure. (f) Simulated constant-height AFM image. (g) Differential conductance (dI/dV) spectra (V=−2 V, I=0.6 nA; modulation voltage Vr.m.s.=30 mV) (color online).

  • Figure 6

    (a) Formation of an organometallic chain and a hexamer macrocycle with C–Cu–C bonds from 1,3-dibromoazulene (DBAz) on Cu(111). (b) STM image of DBAz deposited on Cu(111) at 300 K, consisting of cyclic hexamer and chains. (c) Reaction of 1,1′-biphenyl-4-bromo-4′-ethynyl (BPBE) on a Ag(111) surface. (d) Oligomerization of TMSEA by on-surface desilylative homocoupling. (e) AFM image of oligomerization of TMSEA, and green arrows indicate the diacetylene unit (color online).

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