Transition metal oxides (TMOs) are facinating materials since they combine a variety of unusual physical and chemical properties. Many TMOs exhibit electron correlation effects that become apparent in magnetic order and superconductivity. Possibly more important in terms of application is the widespread use of TMOs as catalysts or catalyst supports.
Currently we are focusing our efforts to understand the properties of thin cobalt oxide films that can be grown in a variety of phases on Ir(100). The advantage over bulk material is that one can tune the structure and thereby the electronic properties of the oxide by changing the growth conditions. Furthermore the thin films can be conducting and can therefore be investigated by LEED and STM in detail.
C.Tröppner, T.Schmitt, M.Reuschl, L.Hammer, and M.A.Schneider, F.Mittendorfer and J.Redinger, R.Podloucky, M.Weinert:
Incommensurate Moiré overlayer with strong local binding: CoO(111) bilayer on Ir(100)
Phys. Rev. B 86, 235407 (2012)