I am trying to cleave the lead-halide perovskite in vacuum to study its intrinsic electronic properties using photoelectron spectroscopy, since it is difficult to remove surface adsorption without damaging perovskite with Argon sputtering.

Cutting the single crystal mechanically using a knife is tricky, especially for MAPbI3 single crystal because it breaks into pieces instead of breaking into a clean crystal plane.

Does anyone know some better techniques to cleave a single crystal in vacuum?

Thank you so much in advance!

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Perhaps this article may suggest a solution: nature.com/articles/s41598-017-00799-0 $\endgroup$ Jul 4, 2018 at 12:20
  • $\begingroup$ I don’t understand the second paragraph - the connection of cleaving and sputtering seems odd. But, there is a long history of in-situ cleaving in the literature over the last 40 years. Yes, your material is brittle, but so we’re many others. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Jul 4, 2018 at 16:42
  • $\begingroup$ I am interested to hear what direction your research is in. Are you only characterising the pure crystal? What methods will you use to do that? Super interesting area, set to have a big impact. $\endgroup$
    – CriglCragl
    Jul 6, 2018 at 16:54
  • $\begingroup$ @PeterDiehr Thank you for the reference. I want to know the energy level information of pure MAPbI3. But as what the reference paper also mentioned, it is much harder to cut MAPbI3 than MAPbBr3. So I am wondering if there are other techniques other than knife cutting to break the cystal. $\endgroup$
    – Zhanhao Hu
    Jul 9, 2018 at 3:17
  • $\begingroup$ What about the standard technique of gluing a pin to the surface of the crystal and knocking it off in vacuum? $\endgroup$
    – KF Gauss
    Jul 9, 2018 at 4:01


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