Vibrational assignments and line shapes in inelastic tunneling spectroscopy: H on Cu(100)
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2006
We have carried out a computational study of the inelastic electron tunnelling spectrum (IETS) of the two vibrational modes of a single hydrogen atom on a Cu(100) surface in a scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM) junction. This study addresses key issues about vibrational assignment and line shape of observed peaks in IETS within the framework of density functional theory calculations and the Lorente-Persson theory for STM-IETS. We argue that the observation of only a single broad peak in the STM-IETS [L. J. Lauhon and W. Ho Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 4566 (2000)] is not caused by any symmetry restrictions or any cancellation between inelastic and elastic vibrational contributions for one of the two modes but is due to strongly overlapping superposition of the contributions from the two modes caused by the rather large instrumental broadening and the narrow vibrational energy separation between the modes. In particular, we find that this broadening and the large asymmetry of the vibrational line shapes gives rise to substantial apparent vibrational energy shifts of the two modes and decreases their apparent energy separation.