Confinement of a three-dimensional organic molecule to two dimensions on a surface

Müller, M. and Henzl, J. and Morgenstern, K.

Volume: 738 Pages:
DOI: 10.1016/j.cplett.2019.136906
Published: 2020

We investigate the adsorption geometry of a three-dimensional organic molecule, anilino-nitro azobenzene, within hydrogen-bonded supramolecular structures on Au(111) by low temperature scanning tunneling microscopy. Therein, three conformational isomers exist, completely planar trans and cis-isomers and a non-planar, but surface adapted cis-isomer. The anilino-end of the molecule is planar for all isomers. In contrast, the nitro-end of the cis-isomer is only planar, if the nitro-end of the molecule forms hydrogen bonds. Our study pinpoints the subtle balance between molecule-substrate and molecule-molecule interaction in adsorption-induced bond-angle distortion that drive partial or full planarization of the molecule. © 2019 Elsevier B.V.

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