Self-assembled rigid monolayers of 4′-substituted-4-mercaptobiphenyls on gold and silver surfaces

Jung F. Kang, Abraham Ulman, Sheng Liao, Rainer Jordan, Guohua Yang, Gang Yu Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

183 Scopus citations


We have prepared, characterized, and studied self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of rigid 4′-substituted-4-mercaptobiphenyls on planar Au(111) and Ag(111) substrates. These monolayers show lower contact angles than their corresponding alkanethiolate SAMs due to the polar nature of the aromatic moieties. Quantitative analysis of infrared spectroscopy, using Eulerian angle, allowed estimation of the average molecular orientation on a surface. In cases where such analysis is possible, it was found that the biphenyl planes are tilted away from the surface normal toward by 14°, 20°, and 12°, for NO2, C(O)CH3, and CO2Et, respectively, and rotate around the 1,4 axis of the ring at 30°, 15°, and 30° on gold, respectively. For SAMs on silver, the tilt is 8°, 21°, and 11°, respectively, and the rotation angle is 32°, 10°, and 31°, respectively, with errors ≤±2°. Scanning tunneling microscopy studies indicate that these plate-shaped molecules form incommensurate structures on Au(111) surfaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-106
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - 9 Jan 2001
Externally publishedYes


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