© 2019 International Union of Crystallography. Platinum thin films activated ex situ by oxygen plasma become reduced by the combined effect of an intense soft X-ray photon beam and condensed water. The evolution of the electronic structure of the surface has been characterized by near-ambient-pressure photoemission and mimics the inverse two-step sequence observed in the electro-oxidation of platinum, i.e. the surface-oxidized platinum species are reduced first and then the adsorbed species desorb in a second step leading to a surface dominated by metallic platinum. The comparison with measurements performed under high-vacuum conditions suggests that the reduction process is mainly induced by the reactive species generated by the radiolysis of water. When the photon flux is decreased, then the reduction process becomes slower.
- Beam damage
- Near-ambient-pressure photoemission
- Platinum oxides