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Journal Article

Self-organized nanostructures in surface chemical reactions: Mechanisms and mesoscopic modeling


Hildebrand,  Michael
Physical Chemistry, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Hildebrand, M. (2002). Self-organized nanostructures in surface chemical reactions: Mechanisms and mesoscopic modeling. Chaos, 12(1), 144-156. doi:10.1063/1.1448807.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0011-15DB-1
Nanoscale patterns can form in reactive adsorbates on catalytic surfaces as a result of attractive lateral interactions. These structures can be described within a mesoscopic theory that is derived by coarse graining the microscopic master equation thus providing a link between microscopic lattice models and reaction-diffusion equations. Such mesoscopic models allow to systematically investigate mechanisms responsible for the formation of nanoscale nonequilibrium patterns in reactive condensed matter. We have found that stationary and traveling nanostructures may result from the interplay of the attractive lateral interactions and nonequilibrium reactions. Besides reviewing these results, a detailed investigation of a single reactive adsorbate in the presence of attractive lateral interactions and global coupling through the gas phase is presented. Finally, it is outlined how a mesoscopic theory should be constructed for a particular scanning tunneling microscopy experiment [the oxidation of hydrogen on a Pt(111) surface] in order to overcome the failure of a corresponding reaction-diffusion model to quantitatively reproduce the experiments.