Oxygen dissociation at Pt steps.
Oxygen dissociation at Pt steps.¶
by P. Gambardella, Z. Sljivancanin, B. Hammer, M. Blanc, K. Kuhnke, and K. Kern.
Phys. Rev. Lett. 87, 056103 (2001).
Using scanning tunneling microscopy, thermal energy atom scattering and density functional theory we have characterized O2 dissociation on Pt(111) stepped surfaces at the atomic scale. The most reactive site is at the top of the Pt steps. In both the molecular precursor state (MPS) and the transition state (TS), the O2 has its axis aligned along the step edge. Controlled step decoration with Ag monatomic chains has been used to locally tune the reactivity of Pt step sites. The enhanced reactivity at the Pt step sites is not caused by a decrease of the local dissociation barriers from the MPS but is related to a stabilization of both the MPS and TS.