Fabrication of nanoscale alumina on NiAl(1 0 0) with a scanning tunneling microscope

C. W. Lin, C. T. Wang, M. F. Luo

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Nanoscale alumina was fabricated on NiAl (1 0 0) surface using a scanning tunneling microscope in an ultrathin vacuum condition. With the tunneling current greater than 0.4 nA and the power (bias voltage × tunneling current) greater than 0.24 nW, Al and pre-adsorbed O atoms were activated to form alumina (with thickness 0.25-1.0 nm) on the surface directly vicinal to the tip; the width and thickness of the grown alumina strips are controllable by the current and bias. With an evidently smaller power and a smaller bias (≦1.0 V), crystalline alumina were grown along direction [0 0 1] or [0 1 0] of NiAl(1 0 0) in the tip-scanned area of either O-chemisorbed or oxidized surfaces, independent of the direction of tip movement. The alumina strips grown through the latter mode have minimal width near 3 nm.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-285
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Surface Science
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2013


  • Alumina
  • Localized heating
  • NiAl
  • Oxidation
  • Scanning tunneling microscope
  • Ultrahigh vacuum


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