Surface Self Assembly and Polymerisation

The self-assembly of small molecules at surfaces is a rapid, scalable and relatively inexpensive approach to the formation of two-dimensional molecular crystals with a range of interesting properties.  We are working to understand the self-assembly of model molecules on a range of surfaces, with a particular focus on understanding the chemical reactions that self-assembled networks undergo with heating (e.g., transitions from hydrogen bonded to metal-coordinated networks).

To gain a detailed understanding of the chemistry and structure of these systems, we draw on a range of tools including scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and synchrotron-based  photoelectron spectroscopy (PES) and near edge X-ray absorption fine structure (NEXAFS).

Picture (right): Trimesic acid on on graphene (Langmuir, 201531(25), pp. 7016-7024)

Picture (below): On surface synthesis of polyethylenedioxythiophene (Chem. Commun., 2018, 54, 3723-3726)


PhD projects available in this area


I. Di Bernardo, P. Hines, M. Abyazisani, N. Motta, J. MacLeod, & J. Lipton-Duffin, (2018) On-surface synthesis of polyethylenedioxythiophene. Chemical Communications54(30), pp. 3723-3726. 

Chief Investigators