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Adsorption of Alkali, Alkaline Earth and Transition Metal Atoms on Silicene

  • Sahin, Hasan
  • Peeters, Francois M.
Published Article
Publication Date
Feb 06, 2013
Submission Date
Feb 06, 2013
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.87.085423
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The adsorption characteristics of alkali, alkaline earth and transition metal adatoms on silicene, a graphene-like monolayer structure of silicon, are analyzed by means of first-principles calculations. In contrast to graphene, interaction between the metal atoms and the silicene surface is quite strong due to its highly reactive buckled hexagonal structure. In addition to structural properties, we also calculate the electronic band dispersion, net magnetic moment, charge transfer, workfunction and dipole moment of the metal adsorbed silicene sheets. Alkali metals, Li, Na and K, adsorb to hollow site without any lattice distortion. As a consequence of the significant charge transfer from alkalis to silicene metalization of silicene takes place. Trends directly related to atomic size, adsorption height, workfunction and dipole moment of the silicene/alkali adatom system are also revealed. We found that the adsorption of alkaline earth metals on silicene are entirely different from their adsorption on graphene. The adsorption of Be, Mg and Ca turns silicene into a narrow gap semiconductor. Adsorption characteristics of eight transition metals Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Mo and W are also investigated. As a result of their partially occupied d orbital, transition metals show diverse structural, electronic and magnetic properties. Upon the adsorption of transition metals, depending on the adatom type and atomic radius, the system can exhibit metal, half-metal and semiconducting behavior. For all metal adsorbates the direction of the charge transfer is from adsorbate to silicene, because of its high surface reactivity. Our results indicate that the reactive crystal structure of silicene provides a rich playground for functionalization at nanoscale.

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