As complex ternary perovskite-type oxides are increasingly used in solid oxide fuel cells, electrolysis and catalysis, it is desirable to obtain a better understanding of their surface chemical properties. Here we report a pronounced ordering of hydroxyls on the cleaved (001) surface of the Ruddlesden-Popper perovskite Ca3Ru2O7 upon water adsorption at 105 K and subsequent annealing to room temperature. Density functional theory calculations predict the dissociative adsorption of a single water molecule (Eads = 1.64 eV), forming an (OH)ads group adsorbed in a Ca-Ca bridge site, with an H transferred to a neighboring surface oxygen atom, Osurf. Scanning tunneling microscopy images show a pronounced ordering of the hydroxyls with (2 × 1), c(2 × 6), (1 × 3), and (1 × 1) periodicity. The present work demonstrates the importance of octahedral rotation and tilt in perovskites, for influencing surface reactivity, which here induces the ordering of the observed OH overlayers.
Corresponding author: Ulrike Diebold (diebold).
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