Applied Physics Letters

Thermal decomposition of surfactant coatings on Co and Ni nanocrystals

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NEXAFS with combined electron and fluorescence detection was employed to detect molecular orbitals of surfactant layers protecting nanocrystals. The change of the orbital structure during thermal decomposition revealed the relevant chemical reactions, both at the surface and in the bulk. The two stages of mass loss in thermogravimetric measurements were identified with thermal desorption of extra oleic acid layers.