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Exceptionally Complex Electronic Structures of Lanthanide Oxides and Small Molecules.
Acc Chem Res ; 52(11): 3265-3273, 2019 Nov 19.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31702894
ABSTRACT
Lanthanide (Ln) oxide clusters and molecular systems provide a bottom-up look at the electronic structures of the bulk materials because of close parallels in the patterns of Ln 4fN subshell occupancy between the molecular and bulk Ln2O3 size limits. At the same time, these clusters and molecules offer a challenge to the theory community to find appropriate and robust treatments for the 4fN patterns across the Ln series. Anion photoelectron (PE) spectroscopy provides a powerful experimental tool for studying these systems, mapping the energies of the ground and low-lying excited states of the neutral relative to the initial anion state, providing spectroscopic patterns that reflect the Ln 4fN occupancy. In this Account, we review our anion PE spectroscopic and computational studies on a range of small lanthanide molecules and cluster species. The PE spectra of LnO- (Ln = Ce, Pr, Sm, Eu) diatomic molecules show spectroscopic signatures associated with detachment of an electron from what can be described as a diffuse Ln 6s-like orbital. While the spectra of all four diatomics share this common transition, the fine structure in the transition becomes more complex with increasing 4f occupancy. This effect reflects increased coupling between the electrons occupying the corelike 4f and diffuse 6s orbitals with increasing N. Understanding the PE spectra of these diatomics sets the stage for interpreting the spectra of polyatomic molecular and cluster species. In general, the results confirm that the partial 4fN subshell occupancy is largely preserved between molecular and bulk oxides and borides. However, they also suggest that surfaces and edges of bulk materials may support a low-energy, diffuse Ln 6s band, in contrast to bulk interiors, in which the 6s band is destabilized relative to the 5d band. We also identify cases in which the molecular Ln centers have 4fN+1 occupancy rather than bulklike 4fN, which results in weaker Ln-O bonding. Specifically, Sm centers in mixed Ce-Sm oxides or in SmxOy- (y ≤ x) clusters have this higher 4fN+1 occupancy. The PE spectra of these particular species exhibit a striking increase in the relative intensities of excited-state transitions with decreasing photon energy (resulting in lower photoelectron kinetic energy). This is opposite of what is expected on the basis of the threshold laws that govern photodetachment. We relate this phenomenon to strong electron-neutral interactions unique to these complex electronic structures. The time scale of the interaction, which shakes up the electronic configuration of the neutral, increases with decreasing electron momentum. From a computational standpoint, we point out that special care must be taken when considering Ln cluster and molecular systems toward the center of the Ln series (e.g., Sm, Eu), where treatment of electrons explicitly or using an effective core potential can yield conflicting results on competing subshell occupancies. However, despite the complex electronic structures associated with partially filled 4fN subshells, we demonstrate that inexpensive and tractable calculations yield useful qualitative insight into the general electronic structural features.

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Texto completo: Disponível Coleções: Bases de dados internacionais Base de dados: MEDLINE Idioma: Inglês Revista: Acc Chem Res Ano de publicação: 2019 Tipo de documento: Artigo País de afiliação: Estados Unidos