This award is made jointly by the Office of Special Projects in Chemistry and the Solid State Chemistry Program in the Division of Materials Research in support of the continuing research of Dr. Kathy Rowlen at the University of Colorado-Boulder. The research relates the atomic level structure of thin metal films to their morphology, optical, and electrical properties. Specifically, the morphology of copper, silver and gold films supported on silica, silicon, mica, and alumina will be characterized using atomic force microscopy and surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy. Issues that will be addressed are: (1) influence of substrate on film morphology; (2) film thermal stability as a function of substrate; (3) in situ measurement of optical properties under film growth conditions; (4) spatial distribution of of metal deposition by photoinduced reduction as a probe for hot electrons in semiconductors; and, (5) application of enhanced electromagnetic fields near metal particles for improved solar conversion efficiency in Schottky barrier solar cells. Adhesion of film to substrate, and the kinetics of particle coalesence will also be investigated. A fundamental understanding of the nature of thin metal films deposited on non-metal surfaces will benefit a variety of technologies including printed circuitry, interconnects, integrated circuits and photovoltaic devices.