In the last week of February 2012, Sarah Reiff, second-year Ph.D. student, traveled to Elettra Synchrotron in Trieste, Italy, to join the international team and take part in an experiment to characterize uracil and thiouracil absorbed on a Au(110) surface. The absorption of these materials was investigated using X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), Near Edge X-ray Adsorption Fine Structure (NEXAFS) and X-ray photoelectron diffraction (XPD). Monolayers of uracil and thiouracil were chosen because of the potential for biosensor devices.
“Participating in this experiment was very beneficial. I was able to learn two new measurement techniques, NEXAFS and XPD, and have the experience of working at a synchrotron facility. I highly enjoyed my time at Elettra, and in Italy,” says Sarah.
Sarah's participation in this collaborative project was possible thanks to financial support from the Division of Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences, Basic Energy Sciences, Office of Science, U.S. Department of Energy.