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Chemically-resolved vertical structures with sub-Angstrom resolution

We employ and develop the normal incidence x-ray standing wave technique (NIXSW) to study interfaces between molecular layers and their substrates, and also (internal) interfaces of two-dimensional materials.

The NIXSW technique is based on x-ray diffraction and x-ray photoemission. It relies on the presence of a crystalline substrate in contact to the sample structure and provides ultra-precise structural information with respect to the crystal lattice of the substrate. Because X-ray reflectivity information and photoemission data are acquired simultaneously, the model-free data analysis is complex. Our open-source analysis program Torricelli automizes the data analysis [1, 2]. In Torricelli, non-dipolar effects in the photoemission process and other geometric parameters (often ignored until now) are systematically taken into account [3]. We have applied NIXSW both to molecules [4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11] and two-dimensional materials [12, 13, 14, 15]. Experiments are carried out at the NIXSW beamline I09 at the Diamond Light Source. It is the only photoemission-based XSW beamline worldwide which allows to apply this technique in UHV.

NIXSW techniqueArtist’s view illustrating the NIXSW technique.

Diamond Light SourceThe Diamond Site at Harwell Campus