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Symmetry breakdown of 4,4"-diamino-p-terphenyl on a Cu(111) surface by lattice mismatch

Zhong, Qigang ; Ebeling, Daniel ; Tschakert, Jalmar ; Gao, Yixuan ; Bao, Deliang ; Du, Shixuan ; Li, Chen ; Chi, Lifeng ; Schirmeisen, André

Originalveröffentlichung: (2018) Nature Communications 9:3277 doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-05719-y
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URN: urn:nbn:de:hebis:26-opus-139925

Sammlung: Open Access - Publikationsfonds
Universität Justus-Liebig-Universit√§t Gie√üen
Institut: Institute of Applied Physics
Fachgebiet: Physik
DDC-Sachgruppe: Physik
Dokumentart: Aufsatz
Sprache: Englisch
Erstellungsjahr: 2018
Publikationsdatum: 31.01.2019
Kurzfassung auf Englisch: Site-selective functionalization of only one of two identical chemical groups within one molecule is highly challenging, which hinders the production of complex organic macromolecules. Here we demonstrate that adsorption of 4,4"-diamino-p-terphenyl on a metal surface leads to a dissymmetric binding affinity. With low temperature atomic force microscopy, using CO-tip functionalization, we reveal the asymmetric adsorption geometries of 4,4"-diamino-p-terphenyl on Cu(111), while on Au(111) the symmetry is retained. This symmetry breaking on Cu(111) is caused by a lattice mismatch and interactions with the subsurface atomic layer. The dissymmetry results in a change of the binding affinity of one of the amine groups, leading to a non-stationary behavior under the influence of the scanning tip. Finally, we exploit this dissymmetric binding affinity for on-surface self-assembly with 4,4"-diamino-p-terphenyl for side-preferential attachment of 2-triphenylenecarbaldehyde. Our findings provide a new route towards surface-induced dissymmetric activation of a symmetric compound.
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