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Phys Rev Lett. 2004 Oct 15;93(16):166101. Epub 2004 Oct 13.

Enhanced self-diffusion on Cu(111) by trace amounts of s: chemical-reaction-limited kinetics.

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Sandia National Laboratories, Livermore, California 94551-0969, USA.


We find that less than 0.01 monolayer of S can enhance surface self-diffusion on Cu(111) by several orders of magnitude. The measured dependence of two-dimensional island decay rates on S coverage (theta(S)) is consistent with the proposal that Cu3S3 clusters are responsible for the enhancement. Unexpectedly, the decay and ripening are diffusion limited with very low and very high theta(S) but not for intermediate theta(S). To explain this result we propose that surface mass transport in the intermediate region is limited by the rate of reaction to form Cu3S3 clusters on the terraces.

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