NO 2 adsorption on Ag(100) supported MgO(100) thin films: Controlling the adsorption state with film thickness

David E. Starr, Christoph Weis, Susumu Yamamoto, Anders Nilsson, Hendrik Bluhm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Using photoemission and X-ray absorption spectroscopy, we compare the adsorption properties of NO2 at 300 K on MgO(100)/Ag(100) films with thicknesses varying from 2 to 8 ML and NO 2 exposures ranging from 0 L to over 25 000 L. We find that NO 2 is stable on 2 ML MgO(100) films, where it is the most abundant adsorbate on the surface (∼0.35 ML) for exposures up to at least ∼25 000 L. At high exposures, NO 3 also forms on the surface of 2 ML thick films but is a minority species. In contrast, films thicker than ∼5 ML show conversion to NO 3 beginning already at low exposures. At high exposure to NO 2, NO 3 is the only species present on the surface. Shifts to lower binding energy of the O 1s spectra with adsorbed species indicate that the NO 2 adsorbed on the thin MgO(100) films is likely negatively charged and forms NO 2-. A more gradual binding energy shift is observed on thicker films and is likely associated with the slower formation of NO 3-. Measurements on MgO(100) films of various thicknesses indicate that for films thicker than 5 ML, the NO 2 adsorption properties are similar and most likely correspond to surfaces of bulk MgO(100). We discuss potential mechanisms for NO 2 charging and stabilization on the thin MgO(100) films in the context of recent literature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7355-7363
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Apr 30
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Energy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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