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In the framework of this thesis, the structural and electronic properties of bismuth and lead deposited on Ag(111) have been investigated by means of low-temperature scanning tunneling microscopy (LT-STM) and spectroscopy (STS).
Prior to spectroscopic investigations the growth characteristics have been investigated by means of STM and low energy electron diffraction (LEED) measurements. Submonolayer coverages as well as thick films have been investigated for both systems.
Subsequently the quantum well characteristics of thick Pb films on Ag(111) have been analyzed and the quantum well character could be proved up to layer thicknesses of N ≈ 100 ML. The observed characteristics in STS spectra were explained by a simple cosine Taylor expansion and an in-plane energy dispersion could be detected by means of quasi-particle interferences.
The main part of this work investigates the giant Rashba-type spin-split surface alloys of
(√3 × √3)Pb/Ag(111)R30◦ and (√3 × √3)Bi/Ag(111)R30◦. With STS experiments the band positions and splitting strengths of the unoccupied (√3 × √3)Pb/Ag(111)R30◦ band
dispersions could be resolved, which were unclear so far. The investigation by means of quasi-particle interferences resulted in the observation of several scattering events, which could be assigned as intra- and inter-band transitions.
The analysis of scattering channels within a simple spin-conservation–approach turned out to be incomplete and led to contradictions between experiment and theory. In this framework more sophisticated DFT calculations could resolve the apparent deviations by a complete treatment of scattering in spin-orbit–coupled materials, which allows for
constructive interferences in spin-flip scattering processes as long as the total momentum J_
is conserved.
In a similar way the band dispersion of (√3 × √3)Bi/Ag(111)R30◦ was investigated. The
STS spectra confirmed a hybridization gap opening between both Rashba-split bands and several intra- and inter-band scattering events could be observed in the complete energy range. The analysis within a spin-conservation–approach again turned out to be insufficient for explaining the observed scattering events in spin-orbit–coupled materials, which was confi by DFT calculations. Within these calculations an inter-band scattering event that has been identified as spin-conserving in the simple model could be assigned as a spin-flip scattering channel. This illustrates evidently how an incomplete description can lead to completely different indications.
The present work shows that different spectroscopic STM modes are able to shed light on Rashba-split surface states. Whereas STS allowed to determine band onsets and splitting strengths, quasi-particle interferences could shed light on the band dispersions. A very important finding of this work is that spin-flip scattering events may result in constructive interferences, an eff which has so far been overlooked in related publications. Additionally it has been found that STM measurements can not distinguish between spin-conserving scattering events or spin-flip scattering events, which prevents to give a definite conclusion on the spin polarization for systems with mixed orbital symmetries just from the observed scattering events.

We report on a combined low-temperature scanning tunneling spectroscopy (STS), angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES), and density functional theory (DFT) investigation of the ( √3x√3) Pb/Ag (111)R30° surface alloy which provides a giant Rashba-type spin splitting. With STS we observed spectroscopic features that are assigned to two hole-like Rashba-split bands in the unoccupied energy range. By means of STS and quantum interference mapping we determine the band onsets, splitting strengths, and dispersions for both bands. The unambiguous assignment of scattering vectors is achieved by comparison to ARPES measurements. While intra-band scattering is found for both Rashba bands, inter-band scattering is only observed in the occupied energy range. Spin- and orbitally-resolved band structures were obtained by DFT calculations. Considering the scattering between states of different spin- and orbital character, the apparent deviation between experimentally observed scattering events and the theoretically predicted spin polarization could be resolved.

Two-Dimensional Electron Systems at Surfaces — Spin-Orbit Interaction and Electronic Correlations
(2012)

This thesis addresses three different realizations of a truly two-dimensional electron system (2DES), established at the surface of elemental semiconductors, i.e., Pt/Si(111), Au/Ge(111), and Sn/Si(111). Characteristic features of atomic structures at surfaces have been studied using scanning tunneling microscopy and low energy electron diffraction with special emphasis on Pt deposition onto Si(111). Topographic inspection reveals that Pt atoms agglomerate as trimers, which represent the structural building block of phase-slip domains. Surprisingly, each trimer is rotated by 30° with respect to the substrate, which results in an unexpected symmetry breaking. In turn, this represents a unique example of a chiral structure at a semiconductor surface, and marks Pt/Si(111) as a promising candidate for catalytic processes at the atomic scale. Spin-orbit interactions (SOIs) play a significant role at surfaces involving heavy adatoms. As a result, a lift of the spin degeneracy in the electronic states, termed as Rashba effect, may be observed. A candidate system to exhibit such physics is Au/Ge(111). Its large hexagonal Fermi sheet is suggested to be spin-split by calculations within the density functional theory. Experimental clarification is obtained by exploiting the unique capabilities of three-dimensional spin detection in spin- and angle-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy. Besides verification of the spin splitting, the in-plane components of the spin are shown to possess helical character, while also a prominent rotation out of this plane is observed along straight sections of the Fermi surface. Surprisingly and for the first time in a 2DES, additional in-plane rotations of the spin are revealed close to high symmetry directions. This complex spin pattern must originate from crystalline anisotropies, and it is best described by augmenting the original Rashba model with higher order Dresselhaus-like SOI terms. The alternative use of group-IV adatoms at a significantly reduced coverage drastically changes the basic properties of a 2DES. Electron localization is strongly enhanced, and the ground state characteristics will be dominated by correlation effects then. Sn/Si(111) is scrutinized with this regard. It serves as an ideal realization of a triangular lattice, that inherently suffers from spin frustration. Consequently, long-range magnetic order is prohibited, and the ground state is assumed to be either a spiral antiferromagnetic (AFM) insulator or a spin liquid. Here, the single-particle spectral function is utilized as a fundamental quantity to address the complex interplay of geometric frustration and electronic correlations. In particular, this is achieved by combining the complementary strengths of ab initio local density approximation (LDA) calculations, state-of-the-art angle-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy, and the sophisticated many-body LDA+DCA. In this way, the evolution of a shadow band and a band backfolding incompatible with a spiral AFM order are unveiled. Moreover, beyond nearest-neighbor hopping processes are crucial here, and the spectral features must be attributed to a collinear AFM ground state, contrary to common expectation for a frustrated spin lattice.