Scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM) was used to study the (110) surface of a VC0.8 sample. The surface shows a missing-row reconstruction, i.e., a grating structure with ridges and valleys oriented along the  direction and (100) and (010) facets. We did not find unreconstructed (110) terraces. The regular spacing of the ridges corresponds to a periodicity of (3x1) or (4x1), depending on preparation, presumably related to different concentrations of carbon vacancies. In the STM images, we can also observe apparent pairing of atoms in the rows, leading to the larger c(6x2) and (4x2) superstructure cells, which also show up in LEED. We attribute these additional periodicities to ordering of carbon vacancies in the surface rows.
Corresponding author: Y. Gauthier (Grenoble). Reprints also available from M. Schmid (schmid).
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