In all deposition and growth processes the initial interface is crucial for adhesion, nucleation, composition and, finally, the actual growth of the three-dimensional bulk. In the past, we studied interfaces and nucleation, e.g., in oxidation or sputter deposition In all these cases, the bonding or epitaxy was determined by covalently bonded interface compounds, identified in composition and morphology by angle resolved photolelectron spectroscopy (ARXPS). Here, we present results on the electro-deposition of Ni onto semiconducting TiQz-x, as used in the LIGA process [3].

This paper is structured as follows: in Section 2.1 the preparation of Ti02-X is outlined, together with the electro deposition process, with a short account of ARXPS results [4]. We found as wetting interface layer Ti02-x(0H)yNi0z at a thickness of 1-2 nm and carbon residues showing a retarded Ni coverage. Section 3 gives the results of scanning tunnel microscopy (STM). For the first time, the distance tunnel spectroscopy (DTS) has been applied successfully to differentiate between metallic and semiconducting surfaces. The surface morphology has been studied ex-situ in air and in-situ under potential control in the sulfamate electrolyte. This section includes initial electroplating in-situ electrochemical STM results. The results are discussed in Section 4, and conclusions in Section 5.

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