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Various atomic structures of monolayer silicene fabricated on Ag(111)

Liu, Zhi-Long; Wang, Mei-Xiao; Xu, Jin-Peng; Ge, Jian-Feng; Lay, Guy Le; Vogt, Patrick; Qian, Dong; Gao, Chun-Lei; Liu, Canhua; Jia, Jin-Feng

FG Experimentelle Nanophysik und Photonik

Silicene, a monolayer of silicon atoms arranged in honeycomb lattices, can be synthesized on the Ag(111) surface, where it forms several superstructures with different buckling patterns and periodicity. Using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), we obtained high-resolution images of silicene grown on Ag(111) and revealed its five phases, i.e., 4 × 4 − α, 4 × 4 − β, − α, − β and − γ, some observed for the first time. For each of the phases, we have determined its atomic structure by comparing the atomic-resolution STM images with theoretical simulation results previously reported. We thus eliminate the contradictions of previous studies on the structural models of various silicene phases supported by the Ag(111) surface.