Hydrogen as a Probe of Semiconductor Surface Structure: The Ge(111)-c(2 x 8) Surface

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Science  10 Jan 1992:
Vol. 255, Issue 5041, pp. 186-188
DOI: 10.1126/science.255.5041.186


Hydrogen can be used as an effective probe of the structure of semiconductor surfaces. Such surfaces consist of bonds with varying degrees of bond strain, and hydrogen can react with each selectively depending on the reaction conditions. This selectivity is derived from a reduced barrier to reaction associated with strained bonds. In this manner, hydrogen can be used to pick apart the surface one bond type at a time, thereby revealing the structure of even complex multilayer reconstructions. This method is used to directly show that the rest-layer of the Ge(111)-c(2 x 8) surface has a bulk structure.