Review article : structures of phthalocyanine molecules on surfaces studied by STM
This review mainly focuses on progress recently achieved in the growth of phthalocyanine molecules on single-crystal surfaces of sub-monolayer up to few-monolayer thin films studied by scanning tunneling microscopy in our groups. On metallic surfaces such as Au(111), Ag(111) and Cu(111), molecular superstructures are determined by combining directional intermolecular interactions caused by symmetry reduction, molecule-substrate interactions and indirect long-range interactions due to quantum interference of surface state electrons. On semiconducting TiO2 surface, molecular assembling structures are dictated by the strong molecule-substrate interaction. However, on insulating NaCl film, molecule-molecule interaction dominates over the molecule-NaCl coupling, leading to molecular growth behavior. Knowledge obtained from these studies would help people better understand the physicochemical properties of the phthalocyanine molecules at surfaces so that their new applications could be further explored and uncovered in the future.