Scanned-energy mode photoelectron diffraction using the O 1s and V 2p emission perpendicular to the surface has been used to investigate the orientation and internal conformation of vanadyl phthalocyanine (VOPc) adsorbed on Au(1 1 1). The results confirm earlier indications from scanning tunnelling microscopy that the Vdouble bond; length as m-dashO vanadyl bond points out of, and not into, the surface. The Vdouble bond; length as m-dashO bondlength is 1.60 ± 0.04 Å, not significantly different from its value in bulk crystalline VOPc. However, the V atom in the adsorbed molecule is almost coplanar with the surrounding N atoms and is thus pulled down into the approximately planar region defined by the N and C atoms by 0.52 (+0.14/−0.10) Å, relative to its location in crystalline VOPc. This change must be attributed to the bonding interaction between the molecule and the underlying metal surface
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