Our investigations focus on the preparation and modification of thin oxide films on metal supports and metal nanoparticles on oxides and on the structural, electronic and chemical properties of these systems for thermal catalysis.

The experiments are performed with the high resolution spectro-microscope SMART (Spectro-Microscope with Aberration Correction for many relevant Techniques) operating at the BESSY II electron storage ring. This aberration corrected and energy filtered Low Energy Electron Microscope (LEEM) / Photo-Emission Electron Microscope (PEEM) combines microscopy, spectroscopy and diffraction of photo-emitted and reflected electrons. It allows for real-time observations of surface processes like oxidation, structure formation or chemical reactions.

Group Members



Lucas de Souza Caldas

Stephan Pohl

Dr. Mauricio Prieto

Dr. Thomas Schmidt

Marcel Springer

Dr. Liviu Tănase

Dr. Aarti Tiwari

Recent Publications

M. Prieto, T. Mullan, W. Wan, L.C. Tanase, L.de S. Caldas, S.K. Shaikhutdinov, J. Sauer, D. Usvyat, T. Schmidt and B. Roldan Cuenya: Plasma Functionalization of Silica Bilayer Polymorphs. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 14 (43), 48609–48618 (2022).
J. Zeininger, P. Winkler, M. Raab, Y. Suchorski, M. Prieto, L.C. Tanase, L.de S. Caldas, A. Tiwari, T. Schmidt, M. Stöger-Pollach, A. Steiger-Thirsfeld, B. Roldan Cuenya and G. Rupprechter: Pattern Formation in Catalytic H2 Oxidation on Rh: Zooming in by Correlative Microscopy. ACS Catalysis 12 (19), 11974–11983 (2022).
N. Michalak, T. Ossowski, Z. Miłosz, M. Prieto, Y. Wang, M. Werwiński, V. Babacic, F. Genuzio, L. Vattuone, A. Kiejna, T. Schmidt and M. Lewandowski: Ostwald Ripening in an Oxide-on-Metal System. Advanced Materials Interfaces 9 (17), 2200222 (2022).
S. Kunze, L.C. Tanase, M. Prieto, P. Grosse, F. Scholten, L.de S. Caldas, D. van Vörden, T. Schmidt and B. Roldan Cuenya: Plasma-assisted Oxidation of Cu(100) and Cu(111). Chemical Science 12 (42), 14241–14253 (2021).
H.I. Røst, B.P. Reed, F.S. Strand, J.A. Durk, A. Evans, A. Grubišić-Čabo, G. Wan, M. Cattelan, M. Prieto, D.M. Gottlob, L.C. Tanase, L.de S. Caldas, T. Schmidt, A. Tadich, B.C.C. Cowie, R.K. Chellappan, J.W. Wells and S.P. Cooil: A Simplified Method for Patterning Graphene on Dielectric Layers. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 13 (31), 37510–37516 (2021).
M. Homann, B. von Boehn, M. Prieto, D.M. Gottlob, L.C. Tanase, T. Schmidt, F. Genuzio, T.O. Menteş, A. Locatelli and R. Imbihl: Coupling of morphological instability and kinetic instability: Chemical waves in hydrogen oxidation on a bimetallic Ni/Rh(111) surface. Physical Review Materials 5 (4), 045002 (2021).
H.I. Røst, R.K. Chellappan, F.S. Strand, Grubišić-Čabo Antonija, B.P. Reed, M. Prieto, L.C. Tanase, L.de S. Caldas, T. Wongpinij, C. Euaruksakul, T. Schmidt, A. Tadich, B.C.C. Cowie, Z. Li, S.P. Cooil and J.W. Wells: Low-Temperature Growth of Graphene on a Semiconductor. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C 125 (7), 4243–4252 (2021).
F. Silvestri, M. Prieto, A. Babuji, L.C. Tanase, L.de S. Caldas, O. Solomeshch, T. Schmidt, C. Ocal and E. Barrena: Impact of Nanomorphology on Surface Doping of Organic Semiconductors: The Pentacene-C60F48 Interface. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 12 (22), 25444–25452 (2020).
K. Schweinar, S. Beeg, C. Hartwig, C.R. Rajamathi, O. Kasian, S. Piccinin, M. Prieto, L.C. Tanase, D.M. Gottlob, T. Schmidt, D. Raabe, R. Schlögl, B. Gault, T. Jones and M.T. Greiner: Formation of a 2D Meta-stable Oxide by Differential Oxidation of AgCu Alloys. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 12 (20), 23595–23605 (2020).


Schmidt, T.: Spectromicroscopy: A Tool for In Situ Studies of Chemical Reactions on Surfaces at Nanometer Scale. Seminar, Spectroscopy in UniSysCat – Status and Perspectives, Online Event (2021)
Schmidt, T.: Spectromicroscopy: A Tool for In Situ Studies of Oxide Films and Thermal Reactions. E-MRS Fall Meeting 2021, Online Event (2021)
Schmidt, T.: Coupled Reactions Over Well-Defined Nanocatalysts. UniSysCat Meeting - Unit A, Online Event (2021)
Schmidt, T.: Spectro-Microscopic in Situ Studies of Electrochemistry and Thermal Reactions. FHI-Workshop on Current Research Topics at the FHI, Online Event (2020)
Schmidt, T.: Research Activities of the ISC Department at Bessy-II: Current State and Perspective. Workshop BESSY III expert meeting Heterogeneous catalysis/Chemistry at surfaces, Online Event (2020)

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