On-surface synthesis has emerged in the last decade as a method to create graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) with atomic precision. The underlying premise of this bottom-up strategy is that precursor molecules undergo a well-defined sequence of inter- and intramolecular reactions, leading to the formation of a single product. As such, the structure of the GNR is encoded in the precursors. However, recent examples have shown that not only the molecule, but also the coinage metal surface on which the reaction takes place, plays a decisive role in dictating the nanoribbon structure. In this work, we use scanning probe microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy to investigate the behavior of 10,10′-dichloro-9,9′-bianthryl (DCBA) on Ag(111). Our study shows that Ag(111) can induce the formation of both seven-atom wide armchair GNRs (7-acGNRs) and 3,1-chiral GNRs (3,1-cGNRs), demonstrating that a single molecule on a single surface can react to different nanoribbon products. We additionally show that coadsorbed dibromoperylene can promote surface-assisted dehydrogenative coupling in DCBA, leading to the exclusive formation of 3,1-cGNRs.
- Fysikalisk kemi