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Journal Article

Modular Assembly of Vibrationally and Electronically Coupled Rhenium Bipyridine Carbonyl Complexes on Silicon


Zeller,  Patrick
Elettra-Sincrotrone Trieste SCpA, AREA Science Park;
Inorganic Chemistry, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Bartl, J. D., Thomas, C., Henning, A., Ober, M. F., Savasci, G., Yazdanshenas, B., et al. (2021). Modular Assembly of Vibrationally and Electronically Coupled Rhenium Bipyridine Carbonyl Complexes on Silicon. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 143(46), 19505-19516. doi:/10.1021/jacs.1c09061.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-0DD3-A
Hybrid inorganic/organic heterointerfaces are promising systems for next-generation photocatalytic, photovoltaic, and chemical-sensing applications. Their performance relies strongly on the development of robust and reliable surface passivation and functionalization protocols with (sub)molecular control. The structure, stability, and chemistry of the semiconductor surface determine the functionality of the hybrid assembly. Generally, these modification schemes have to be laboriously developed to satisfy the specific chemical demands of the semiconductor surface. The implementation of a chemically independent, yet highly selective, standardized surface functionalization scheme, compatible with nanoelectronic device fabrication, is of utmost technological relevance. Here, we introduce a modular surface assembly (MSA) approach that allows the covalent anchoring of molecular transition-metal complexes with sub-nanometer precision on any solid material by combining atomic layer deposition (ALD) and selectively self-assembled monolayers of phosphonic acids. ALD, as an essential tool in semiconductor device fabrication, is used to grow conformal aluminum oxide activation coatings, down to sub-nanometer thicknesses, on silicon surfaces to enable a selective step-by-step layer assembly of rhenium(I) bipyridine tricarbonyl molecular complexes. The modular surface assembly of molecular complexes generates precisely structured spatial ensembles with strong intermolecular vibrational and electronic coupling, as demonstrated by infrared spectroscopy, photoluminescence, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis. The structure of the MSA can be chosen to avoid electronic interactions with the semiconductor substrate to exclusively investigate the electronic interactions between the surface-immobilized molecular complexes.