We report the results of a mirror electron microscope low energy electron diffraction (MEM-LEED) study of anomalous thermal behavior caused by enhanced thermal vibrational motion on a clean Cu(110) surface. The enhanced vibrational amplitudes cause diffracted intensities to deviate from simple Debye-Waller behavior. These deviations become apparent between 550 K and 600 K; i.e. at about 0.45 of the bulk melting temperature. Because of the finite penetration of low energy electrons, LEED intensities contain information about both surface and subsurface order. Our LEED results are analyzed to extract this information using a kinematical model in which the electron attenuation and the depth and temperature dependent vibrational amplitudes are parametrized. For a large range of model parameters, we conclude that by 850 K large anharmonic vibrations are present in several layers and at least two subsurface layers may have melted.
- 68.35 Ja
- 68.35 Rh
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)