Nano Research

, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 235–241

Identification of molecular flipping of an asymmetric tris(phthalocyaninato) lutetium triple-decker complex by scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy


  • Xianghua Kong
    • Institute of ChemistryChinese Academy of Sciences
  • Shengbin Lei
    • National Center for Nanoscience and Technology
  • Yanlian Yang
    • National Center for Nanoscience and Technology
  • Ke Deng
    • National Center for Nanoscience and Technology
  • Guicun Qi
    • National Center for Nanoscience and Technology
    • National Center for Nanoscience and Technology
Open AccessResearch Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12274-009-9021-z

Cite this article as:
Kong, X., Lei, S., Yang, Y. et al. Nano Res. (2009) 2: 235. doi:10.1007/s12274-009-9021-z


The assembling behavior and electronic properties of asymmetric tris(phthalocyaninato) lutetium tripledecker sandwich complex molecules (Lu2Pc3) on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) surfaces have been studied by scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy (STM/STS) methods. Phase transitions were observed at different bias polarities, involving an ordered packing arrangement with fourfold symmetry at negative bias and an amorphous arrangement at positive bias. Molecular switching behaviour for individual Lu2Pc3 molecules was reported here according to the bias-polarity-induced flipping phenomena and the peak shift in dI/dV versus V curves at different voltage scanning directions. The sensitive response of the strong intrinsic molecular dipole to an external electric field is proposed to be responsible for molecular switching of Lu2Pc3 at the solid/liquid interface.


Triple-decker sandwich complexphase transitionmolecular switchscanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy
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© Tsinghua University Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH 2009