Boron forms compounds with nearly all metals, with notable exception of copper and other group IB and IIB elements. Here, we report an unexpected discovery of ordered copper boride grown epitaxially on Cu(111) under ultrahigh vacuum. Scanning tunneling microscopy experiments combined with ab initio evolutionary structure prediction reveal a remarkably complex structure of 2D-Cu8B14. Strong intra-layer p–d hybridization and a large amount of charge transfer between Cu and B atoms are the key factors for the emergence of copper boride. This makes the discovered material unique and opens up the possibility of synthesizing ordered low-dimensional structures in similar immiscible systems.
- Copper boride
- Molecular beam epitaxy
- Scanning tunneling microscopy