Using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) we observed atomic scale interference patterns on quasi-freestanding WSe2 islands grown on top of graphene. The bias-independent double atomic size periodicity of these patterns and the sharp Brillouin zone edge revealed by 2D STM Fourier analysis indicate formation of optical phonon standing waves due to scattering on intercalating defects supporting these islands. Standing wave patterns of both synchronized and non-synchronized optical phonons, corresponding to resonant and non-resonant phonon scattering regimes, were experimentally observed. We also found the symmetry breaking effect for individual phonon wave packets, one of the unique features distinguishing phonon standing waves. We show that vibrational and electronic anharmonicities are responsible for STM detection of these patterns. A significant contribution to the interference contrast arises from quantum zero-point oscillations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Mechanical Engineering
- Mechanics of Materials
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics