The Royal Society of Chemistry
Morphology plays a critical role in determining the properties of solid-state molecular materials, yet fluctuates wildly as these materials undergo reaction. A prototypical system, a vapor–solid Diels–Alder reaction of tetracene and pentacene thin-films, is used to observe the evolution of morphology features as the reaction transitions from surface to bulk. The initial stages of reaction display little topographical change as measured by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and substrates are coated with a uniform layer of product 1–2 molecules thick, as determined by energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy. The highly textured surfaces of late stage reactions are a result of aggregated products, as identified via EDX spectroscopy and polarization modulation infrared reflection absorption spectroscopy (PM-IRRAS); areas of the surface in between product aggregates resemble the initial stages. The mechanism by which products aggregate into surface asperities requires the assistance of a facilitating media – in this case condensed vapor; simple thermally assisted surface diffusion was unable to generate these morphology changes. The combined data indicate that reactions of molecular solids, could be confined to the surface in the absence of condensate of the vapor phase reactant.
Li, Feifei and Ciszek, Jacob W.. Reaction induced morphology changes of tetracene and pentacene surfaces. RSC Advances, 9, : 26942-26948, 2019. Retrieved from Loyola eCommons, Chemistry: Faculty Publications and Other Works, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C9RA05682C
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