J. M. Topple, S. A. Burke, W. Ji, S. Fostner , A. Tekiel , and P. Grütter
Department of Physics, McGill University, Montreal, H3A 2T8, Canada
DOI:10.1021/jp107644u Publication Date: December 14, 2010
Methods of tailoring molecular thin film morphology and maturation rate were investigated by noncontact atomic force microscopy. Submonolayer coverages of 3,4,9,10-perylenetetracarboxylic diimide deposited on alkali-halides form films of needle-shaped islands, and undergo a dewetting transition when deposited on NaCl. The resulting island surface distribution, size, shape, and rate of dewetting may be varied by changing growth conditions such as temperature and by templating the substrate with single atomic layer deep pits or depositing gold nanoclusters to modify island nucleation. This characterization is an important step in controlling the structure of thin organic films for devices that are sensitive to nanoscale film structure.