Using Ion Spectroscopies for Unraveling Atomic-Scale Processes Relevant for Catalysis and Solid Oxide Fuel Cells


Technologies such as catalysis and energy conversion schemes ultimately rely on
surface chemical processes. While, in technical materials, it is difficult to nail down
the underlying molecular-scale mechanisms, intricate insights can be obtained from
surface science investigations on appropriate model systems.
To obtain such atomic-scale information our group is investigating single-crystalline
metal oxide surfaces with Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM). We combine imaging
with area-averaging spectroscopic methods, and find that low-energy He+ ion
scattering (LEIS or ISS) is a particularly useful complementary tool because of its high
surface sensitivity.
Using results on SrTiO3 and Fe3O4 as examples I will discuss how we combine SPM,
isotopic labeling, and ISS to understand surface reactions.


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