We investigated the mechanisms of secondary electron (SE) emission from Be(0001) by impact of 100 and 150 eV electrons. We made use of (e, 2e) spectroscopy to disentangle the different SE production mechanisms. We observed a large increase in the SE yield when the energy loss of the primary electron equals the characteristic energy of volume and surface plasmons. The line shape of the SE spectrum associated with plasmon excitation reveals that one relevant emission mechanism corresponds to direct single-particle excitation in which the plasmon energy and momentum are transferred to a valence band electron of the solid. The contributions to the SE yield associated with surface and volume plasmon excitation are comparable in the case of specular geometry, where the projectile momentum is mainly transferred perpendicular to the surface. On the contrary, the emission of SEs associated with surface plasmon excitation is significantly enhanced when the exchanged momentum lies close to the surface plane and electrons are emitted from Be surface state. This reflects the increased sensitivity to surface modes of the latter geometry. Finally, the coupling between the direct ionization channel and the plasmon-assisted one results in a resonant increase of the secondary emission.
DI FILIPPO, G., Sbaraglia, D., Ruocco, A., Stefani, G. (2016). Plasmon resonant (e, 2e) spectroscopy on Be(0001). PHYSICAL REVIEW. B, 94(15) [10.1103/PhysRevB.94.155422].