Threefold Electron Scattering on Graphite Observed with C60-Adsorbed STM Tips

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Science  06 Sep 1996:
Vol. 273, Issue 5280, pp. 1371-1373
DOI: 10.1126/science.273.5280.1371


The scanning tunneling microscope (STM) has been used to observe threefold symmetric electron scattering from point defects on a graphite surface. These theoretically predicted electronic perturbations could not be observed with a bare metal tip but could only be imaged when a fullerene (C60) molecule was adsorbed onto the tunneling region (apex) of an STM tip. Functionalizing an STM tip with an appropriate molecular adsorbate alters the density of states near the Fermi level of the tip and changes its imaging characteristics.