Published online by Cambridge University Press: 21 March 2011
Kinetic Monte Carlo (KMC) simulations are used to investigate the recent scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) measurements of fast decaying adatom islands on Cu(111). The KMC model is a full diffusion bond-counting model including nearest neighbor as well as second-nearest neighbor interactions. For encounters between steps in adjacent atomic layers of an island it is demonstrated that a moderately reduced activation energy for interlayer adatom transport is enough to obtain correspondence between simulations and experiments, provided that the one-dimensional Ehrlich-Schwoebel barrier for corner transitions is reduced to zero. The results presented in this report are interesting because they demonstrate that step-edge crossing by simple adatom hopping is sufficient to explain the rapid island-decay mechanism.
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