Scaling and exponent equalities in island nucleation: Novel results and application to organic films

Alberto Pimpinelli, Levent Tumbek, Adolf Winkler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

It is known in thin-film deposition that the density of nucleated clusters N varies with the deposition rate F as a power law, N ∼ Fα. The exponent α is a function of the critical nucleus size i in a way that changes with the aggregation limiting process. We extend here the derivation of the analytical capture-zone distribution function Pβ(s) = aß·sβ·exp(-b βs2) of Pimpinelli and Einstein to generic aggregation-limiting processes. We show that the parameter β is generally related to the critical nucleus size i and to the exponent α by the equality α·β = i, in the case of compact islands. This remarkable result allows one to measure i with no a priori knowledge of the actual aggregation mechanism. We apply this equality to measuring the critical nucleus size for pentacene deposition on mica. This system shows a crossover from diffusion-limited to attachment-limited aggregation with increasing deposition rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)995-998
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Volume5
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 20 2014

Keywords

  • attachment-limited aggregation
  • capture zone distribution
  • mica
  • nucleation
  • pentacene
  • thin film growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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