Title

Realization of an Al≡Al Triple Bond in the Gas-Phase Na3Al2− Cluster via Double Electronic Transmutation

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title

Angewandte Chemie International Edition

Publication Date

8-20-2018

Publisher

Wiley - V C H Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA

Award Number

NSF, Division of Chemistry 1664379

Funder

NSF, Division of Chemistry

Volume

57

Issue

43

First Page

14060

Last Page

14064

Abstract

The discovery of homodinuclear multiple bonds composed of Group 13 elements represents one of the most challenging frontiers in modern chemistry. A classical triple bond such as N≡N and HC≡CH contains one σ bond and two π bonds constructed from the p orbitals perpendicular to the σ bond. However, the traditional textbook triple bond between two Al atoms has remained elusive. Here we report an Al≡Al triple bond in the designer Na3Al2 cluster predicted in silico, which was subsequently generated by pulsed arc discharge followed by mass spectrometry and photoelectron spectroscopy characterizations. Being effectively Al2− due to the electron donation from Na, the Al atoms in Na3Al2 undergo a double electronic transmutation into Group 15 elements, thus the Al2−≡Al2− kernel mimics the P≡P and N≡N molecules. We anticipate this work will stimulate more endeavors in discovering materials using Al2−≡Al2− as a building block in the gas phase and in the solid state.

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