The surface structures and compositions of Au-Rh bimetallic nanoclusters on an ordered thin film of Al2O3/NiAl(100) were investigated, primarily with infrared reflection absorption spectra and temperature-programmed desorption of CO as a probe molecule under ultrahigh-vacuum conditions and calculations based on density-functional theory. The bimetallic clusters were formed by sequential deposition of vapors of Au and Rh onto Al2O3/NiAl(100) at 300 K. Alloying in the clusters was active and proceeded toward a specific structure - a fcc phase, (100) orientation, and Rh core-Au shell structure, regardless of the order of metal deposition. For Au clusters incorporating deposited Rh, the Au atoms remained at the cluster surface through position exchange and became less coordinated; for deposition in reverse order, deposited Au simply decorated the surfaces of Rh clusters. Both adsorption energy and infrared absorption intensity were enhanced for CO on Au sites of the bimetallic clusters; both of them are associated with the bonding to Rh and also a decreased coordination number of CO-binding Au. These enhancements can thus serve as a fingerprint for alloying and atomic inter-diffusion in similar bimetallic systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry