About Me

I am a research fellow at the Technical University of Munich, where I work in the Chair of Physical Chemistry. My research interests lie in dynamical processes on surfaces. In particular, I study the diffusion of molecules and metal clusters on well-defined model catalyst surfaces via time-resolved scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and follow surface reactions on size-selected metal clusters via ambient pressure x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (APXPS). By comparing the stability, dynamics and reactivity of model catalyst surfaces under ultra-high vacuum (UHV) and in a reaction gas atmosphere, it is possible to unravel the interplay of interactions of adsorbate molecules with each other, with metal clusters, and with the substrate, thus obtaining a wealth of information about the stability of a catalyst particle.

During my PhD research at the University of Cambridge, I had the chance to specialize in a unique spectroscopic method, termed helium spin-echo, enabling the observation of molecular motion on surfaces without disrupting it in the process. As a postdoc in Miquel Salmeron's group at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab I expanded my work toward understanding the interactions of different molecules on a surface, providing information about their interactions and reactivity. Here in Munich, I am bringing together these different aspects of surface processes and applying them to small metal clusters, a speciality of the Chair of Physical Chemistry.


Dr. Barbara A. J. Lechner

Department of Chemistry
Technical University of Munich
Lichtenbergstraße 4
D-85748 Garching

+49 (89) 289 - 13394 / 13645