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IBM Journal of Research and Development  
Volume 30, Number 5, Page 455 (1986)
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy II
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Properties of vacuum tunneling currents: Anomalous barrier heights

by J. H. Coombs, J. B. Pethica
A design of STM which does not use vacuum internal vibration isolation and may be cooled to liquid helium temperatures is described. Tunneling current characteristics underlying STM operations are discussed. A model is presented to explain the anomalously low (<1 eV) tunneling barrier heights often observed. On the basis of this model we suggest criteria for obtaining reliable STM images.
Related Subjects: Physics, solid state; Quantum theory and effects; Scanning tunneling microscopy; Surface science