Physical Review Letters

Coexistence of negatively and positively buckled isomers on n +-doped Si(111)-2×1

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A long-standing puzzle regarding the Si(111)-2×1 surface has been solved. The surface energy gap previously determined by photoemission on heavily n-doped crystals was not compatible with a strongly bound exciton known from other considerations to exist. New low-temperature angle-resolved photoemission and scanning tunneling microscopy data, together with theory, unambiguously reveal that isomers with opposite bucklings and different energy gaps coexist on such surfaces. The subtle energetics between the isomers, dependent on doping, leads to a reconciliation of all previous results. © 2011 American Physical Society.