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FEATURE ARTICLE Surface Processes Induced by Collisions

Surface Processes Induced by Collisions
Micha Asscher*, and Yehuda Zeiri
Department of Physical Chemistry and Farkas Center for Light Induced Processes, The Hebrew UniVersity,
Jerusalem 91904, Israel, and Department of Chemistry, Nuclear Research Center NegeV, P.O.B. 9001,
Beer-SheVa 84190, Israel
ReceiVed: September 19, 2002; In Final Form: April 22, 2003
Energetic gas-phase particles that collide with adsorbed species on solid surfaces induce a variety of processes.
Collision induced processes (CIP) are important and may play a central role in the mechanism governing
heterogeneous catalytic reactions at high pressures and elevated temperatures. A number of different CIPs
are discussed in this article with a strong emphasis on the utilization of molecular dynamics (MD) simulations
as a tool for gaining molecular level mechanistic and dynamic insight into chemical events under investigation.
Collision induced desorption (CID) is the simplest CIP to be discussed. The CID of N2 from Ru(001) is
described as a test case for the effect of collisions on a polarized adsorbate and has been studied at both low
and high coverages. The interpretation of the experimental data at low coverage using MD simulations has
led to the introduction of a new desorption mechanism. It involves strong coupling of surface corrugation
and adsorbate frustrated rotation that lead to a normal motion away from the surface. Another system for
which CID was shown to provide unique information is that of water on Ru(001). Here, the enhanced CID
rate was demonstrated to be selective for a specific adsorption site/structure on the surface (the A2 site),
providing a new insight into the structure of water on this surface, recently recalculated by employing ab


Source: Asscher, Micha - Institute of Chemistry, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Zeiri, Yehuda - Institute of Chemistry, Hebrew University of Jerusalem


Collections: Chemistry