Journal of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena

Crystallographic determination of metal surfaces with helium scattering

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Helium-surface diffraction data has been used to construct the interaction potential between a Helium atom and a metal surface. The constructed potential fits experimental data for all beam energies and angles of incidence and more importantly is independent of beam energy. Such a potential essentially consists of two parts: a short range repulsive corrugated potential due to electronic overlap, and a long range attractive potential due to dispersion forces. We have generated potentials for He scattering for Ni, Cu and Au and in all cases found excellent agreement with experiments. We also report that the repulsive part of the He scattering potential can be obtained rather simply from first principles without adjustable parameters. This suggests that one can determine surface crystallography from first principles without adjustable parameters. © 1983.