Ames Laboratory; Chemistry; Office of Biotechnology
Chemistry, Ames Laboratory, Office of Biotechnology
Chemistry - A European Journal
Three novel isostructural equiatomic gold tetrel pnictides, AuSiAs, AuGeP, and AuGeAs, were synthesized and characterized. These phases crystallize in the noncentrosymmetric (NCS) monoclinic space group Cc (no. 9), featuring square-planar Au within cis-[AuTt2Pn2] units (Tt=tetrel, Si, Ge; Pn=pnictogen, P, As). This is in drastic contrast to the structure of previously reported AuSiP, which exhibits typical linear coordination of Au with Si and P. Chemical bonding analysis through the electron localization function suggests covalent two-center two-electron Tt−Pn bonds, and three-center Au−Tt−Au and Au−Pn−Au bonds with 1.6 e− per bond. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy studies support the covalent and nonionic nature of Au−Pn and Au−Tt bonds. The title materials were found to be n-type narrow-gap semiconductors or semimetals, with nearly temperature-independent electrical resistivities and low thermal conductivities. A combination of the semimetallic properties with tunable NCS structure provides opportunities for the development of materials based on gold tetrel pnictides.
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