Nicole S. Bein, Pamela Machado, Mariona Coll, Feng Chen, Maja Makarovic, Tadej Rojac, Andreas Klein*. J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 2019, 10, XXX, 7071-7076.
The interaction of BiFeO3 and Co-doped BiFeO3 thin-film surfaces with water vapor is examined using photoelectron spectroscopy. Water exposure results in an upward shift of the Fermi energy, which is limited by the reduction of Bi and Fe in undoped BiFeO3 and by the reduction of Co in oxidized Co-doped BiFeO3. The results highlight the importance of surface potential changes induced by the interaction of solid surfaces with water and the ability of photoelectron spectroscopy to quantitatively determine electrochemical reduction potentials and defect energy levels.