SURFACE SCIENCE

Tipping the vibrational spectrum

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  29 Jun 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6396, pp. 1417-1418
DOI: 10.1126/science.360.6396.1417-g

Scanning tunneling microscopy can be used to measure the vibrational spectrum of adsorbed molecules as loss features in the inelastic tunneling of electrons. Okabayashi et al. explored perturbations caused by the close proximity of the microscope tip to the adsorbed molecule—in this case, CO adsorbed on the Cu(111) surface. From a series of force-sensing and frequency-shift scans, they could determine the changes in frequency arising from the force exerted by the tip by modeling the surface, molecule, and tip as a mechanical system. The tip weakened and lengthened the C–O bond and shifted the frustrated translational mode of CO to higher energies.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 10.1073/pnas.1721498115 (2018).

Navigate This Article