London Centre for Nanotechnology, University College London, London WC1H 0AJ, UK
Our work is motivated by a desire to modify materials on the nanoscale in a controlled way. This could pave the way for the manufacture of nano-devices. Here one approach is described which involves the creation of self-assembled ultrathin nanostructures of titanium oxide on Ni(110). Atomically resolved STM images of low dimensional structures of titanium oxides grown on Ni(110) have been recorded. The overlayers were prepared by vapor phase deposition of Ti followed by oxidation in 1 x 10-7 mbar O2 at 800 K. Rutile TiO2(110) islands are observed, along with TiO(001) terraces and a previously reported quasi-hexagonal overlayer. In addition, arrays of self-assembled TiO nanodots of about 8 Å in diameter are observed, which appear to contain five Ti atoms. By modifying the growth conditions it is possible to grow overlayers of NiTiO3(1012). This is based on a combination of the overlayer periodicity from STM images and XPEEM data recorded at the ALS.
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