Table of Contents
Physics Research International
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 172987, 8 pages
Review Article

Nuclear Wavepacket Dynamics of Alkali Adsorbates on Metal Surfaces Studied by Time-Resolved Second Harmonic Generation

Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan

Received 2 December 2011; Accepted 15 February 2012

Academic Editor: Goro Mizutani

Copyright © 2012 Kazuya Watanabe and Yoshiyasu Matsumoto. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper reviews recent efforts to understand the dynamics of coherent surface vibrations of alkali atoms adsorbed on metal surfaces. Time-resolved second harmonic generation is used for the coherent excitation and detection of the nuclear wavepacket dynamics of the surface modes. The principles of the measurement and the experimental details are described. The main focus is on coverage and excitation photon energy dependences of the coherent phonon dynamics for Na-, K-, and Cs-covered Cu(111). The excitation mechanism of the coherent phonon has been revealed by the ultrafast time-domain technique and theoretical modelings.