Reduction of nitric acid on Ag in ultrahigh vacuum: A Raman spectroscopic investigation

Christopher D. Zangmeister, Robert J. Davis, Pawel Mrozek, Jeanne E. Pemberton

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1 Scopus citations


The reduction of HNO3 on Ag as a function of temperature in ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) is studied using Raman spectroscopy and thermal desorption-mass spectrometry (TDMS). Thin layers of molecular HNO3 are stable on the surface below 150 K, but are spontaneously reduced above 150 K with concomitant time-dependent partial desorption of products. The asymmetric nitric oxide dimer, NONO, is observed as the sole reduction product that remains on the surface based on its distinctive Raman spectral signature. The mechanism of NONO formation from HNO3 is proposed to occur through a multistep reduction of HNO3 on the Ag surface starting from NO3- and proceeding stepwise through NO2 and NO2- to NO, followed by combination to form NONO in a process catalyzed by a Lewis acid, oxidized Ag species. Desorption of the majority of surface species is largely complete by 210 K.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2395-2401
Number of pages7
JournalSurface Science
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 15 2008


  • Nitrogen oxides
  • Raman scattering spectroscopy
  • Surface chemical reaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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