Layer-by-layer deposition of organic molecules controlled by selective click reactions – Publication by A8 (Koert/Dürr) in Chemistry of Materials  

In a joint effort, the research groups led by Ulrich Koert and Michael Dürr realized the controlled layer-by-layer synthesis of organic molecular structures on silicon.

Two selective click reactions are employed for the controlled layer-by-layer synthesis or organic structures on silicon. Each reaction step is performed in solution and monitored by means of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under ultra-high vacuum conditions. Reprinted with permission from Chem. Mater. 2024. Copyright 2024 American Chemical Society.

The application of molecular layer deposition on silicon surfaces may open the route to directly synthesizing organic molecular architectures with tailored physical and/or physicochemical properties on the technologically most relevant silicon substrates (“more than Moore”). 

In their most recent publication, the researchers from A8 show how to use a combination of two selective and orthogonal click reactions (Cu-mediated and strain promoted azide-alkyne couplings) for such a controlled layer-by-layer growth of organic architectures on Si(001). Starting point was the Si(001) substrate, which was selectively functionalized with a substituted cyclooctyne under ultrahigh-vacuum (UHV) conditions. The subsequent layer-by-layer synthesis using the two orthogonal click chemistry reaction steps was then performed in solution in an alternating fashion. The product of each reaction step was analyzed in UHV by means of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy; controlled layer-by-layer growth up to 11 molecular layers was realized and monitored in this way.

Together with previous studies of the researchers from A8 (Koert/Dürr), B5 (Höfer/Mette) and A6 (Tonner) on selective functionalization of the Si(001) surface and the combination of UHV-based surface chemistry with solution-based click chemistry, a complete toolbox for the well-controlled growth of molecular structures on silicon is now available.


T. Glaser, J.A. Peters, D. Scharf, U. Koert, M. Dürr
Layer-by-Layer Deposition of Organic Molecules Controlled by Selective Click Reactions
Chem. Mater. 36 (2024) 561 DOI:10.1021/acs.chemmater.3c02707


Prof. Dr. Ulrich Koert
Philipps-Universität Marburg
SFB 1083 project A8
Tel.: 06421 28-26970

Prof. Dr. Michael Dürr
Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen
SFB 1083 project A8
Tel.: 0641 99-33490