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Structure of Co-2 × 2 nanoislands grown on Ag/Ge(111)-√3 × √3 surface studied by scanning tunneling microscopy

Xiao-Lan Huang, Chun-Liang Lin, Agnieszka Tomaszewska, Chun-Rong Chen and Tsu-Yi Fu*

Author Affiliations

Department of Physics, National Taiwan Normal University, 88, Sec. 4 Ting-Chou Rd., Taipei, 116, Taiwan, Republic of China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:189  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-189

Published: 19 March 2012


We have found that Co-2 × 2 islands grown on an Ag/Ge(111)-√3 × √3 surface have hcp structure with the (11-20) orientation. The island evolution involves transformation of the unit cell shape from parallelogram into rectangular, which is accompanied by the island shape transformation from hexagonal into stripe-like. Identified are two crystallographic directions for the island growth, the pseudo-[0001] and the pseudo-[1-100]. We have observed the occurrence of a lateral shift between the topmost and the underlying bilayers in the case of the island growth along the pseudo-[0001] direction. In contrast, the topmost and the underlying bilayers are unshifted for the growth along the pseudo-[1-100] direction.