Self-Assembly of n-Alkyl Thiols as Disulfides on Au(111)

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Science  18 Nov 1994:
Vol. 266, Issue 5188, pp. 1216-1218
DOI: 10.1126/science.266.5188.1216


A grazing incidence x-ray diffraction study of CH3(CH2)9SH self-assembled on the (111) surface of gold revealed a disulfide head group structure, which provides a context in which to understand the structure and self-assembly process of this widely studied system. The structure consists of a nearly hexagonal two-dimensional arrangement of the hydrocarbon chains with a dimerization of the sulfur head groups (accommodated through a gauche bond), resulting in a S-S spacing of 2.2 angstroms. These results demonstrate the importance of internal molecular degrees of freedom in the templating of "soft" organic materials on inorganic substrates.