Probing magnetic coupling between LnPc2 (Ln = Tb, Er) molecules and the graphene/Ni (111) substrate with and without Au-intercalation: role of the dipolar field†
Lanthanides (Ln) bis-phthalocyanine (Pc), the so-called LnPc2double decker, are a promising class of molecules with a well-defined magnetic anisotropy. In this work, we investigate the magnetic properties of LnPc2 molecules UHV-deposited on a graphene/Ni(111) substrate and how they modify when an Au layer is intercalated between Ni and graphene. X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), and linear and magnetic circular dichroism (XLD and XMCD) were used to characterize the systems and probe the magnetic coupling between LnPc2 molecules and the Ni substrate through graphene, both gold-intercalated and not. Two types of LnPc2 molecules (Ln = Tb, Er) with a different magnetic anisotropy (easy-axis for Tb, easy-plane for Er) were considered. XMCD shows an antiferromagnetic coupling between Ln and Ni(111) even in the presence of the graphene interlayer. Au intercalation causes the vanishing of the interaction between Tb and Ni(111). In contrast, in the case of ErPc2, we found that the gold intercalation does not perturb the magnetic coupling. These results, combined with the magnetic anisotropy of the systems, suggest the possible importance of the magnetic dipolar field contribution for determining the magnetic behaviour.