Atomic imaging of oxide-supported metallic nanocrystals

Zhenxing Feng, Alexander Kazimirov, Michael J. Bedzyk*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


The nucleation of noble metal nanoparticles on oxide surfaces can lead to dramatic enhancements in catalytic activity that are related to the atomic-scale formation of the nanoparticles and interfaces. For the case of submonolayer Pt deposited on the 2 - 1 SrTiO 3(001) surface atomic-force microscopy shows the formation of nanoparticles. We use X-ray standing wave (XSW) atomic imaging to show that these nanoparticles are composed of Pt face-centered-cubic nanocrystals with cube-on-cube epitaxy laterally correlated to the substrate unit cell. The phase sensitivity of the XSW allows for a direct measurement of the interface offset between the two unit cells along the c-axis. Different Pt coverages lead to differences in the observed XSW image of the interfacial structure, which is explained by a proposed model based on the Pt-Pt interaction becoming stronger than the Pt-substrate interaction as the global coverage is increased from 0.2 to 0.6 ML.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9755-9760
Number of pages6
JournalACS nano
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 27 2011


  • X-ray standing waves
  • atomic imaging
  • epitaxy
  • interface structure
  • nanoparticles
  • platinum
  • strontium titanate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • General Materials Science


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