Title

From Quasicrystals to Crystals with Interpenetrating Icosahedra in Ca–Au–Al: In Situ Variable-Temperature Transformation

Campus Units

Chemistry, Physics and Astronomy, Ames Laboratory

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Accepted Manuscript

Publication Date

2018

Journal or Book Title

Journal of the American Chemical Society

Volume

140

Issue

4

First Page

1337

Last Page

1347

DOI

10.1021/jacs.7b10358

Abstract

The irreversible transformation from an icosahedral quasicrystal (i-QC) CaAu4.39Al1.61 to its cubic 2/1 crystalline approximant (CA) Ca13Au56.31(3)Al21.69 (CaAu4.33(1)Al1.67, Pa3̅ (No. 205); Pearson symbol: cP728; a = 23.8934(4)), starting at ∼570 °C and complete by ∼650 °C, is discovered from in situ, high-energy, variable-temperature powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), thereby providing direct experimental evidence for the relationship between QCs and their associated CAs. The new cubic phase crystallizes in a Tsai-type approximant structure under the broader classification of polar intermetallic compounds, in which atoms of different electronegativities, viz., electronegative Au + Al vs electropositive Ca, are arranged in concentric shells. From a structural chemical perspective, the outermost shell of this cubic approximant may be described as interpenetrating and edge-sharing icosahedra, a perspective that is obtained by splitting the traditional structural description of this shell as a 92-atom rhombic triacontahedron into an 80-vertex cage of primarily Au [Au59.86(2)Al17.14□3.00] and an icosahedral shell of only Al [Al10.5□1.5]. Following the proposal that the cubic 2/1 CA approximates the structure of the i-QC and on the basis of the observed transformation, an atomic site analysis of the 2/1 CA, which shows a preference to maximize the number of heteroatomic Au–Al nearest neighbor contacts over homoatomic Al–Al contacts, implies a similar outcome for the i-QC structure. Analysis of the most intense reflections in the diffraction pattern of the cubic 2/1 CA that changed during the phase transformation shows correlations with icosahedral symmetry, and the stability of this cubic phase is assessed using valence electron counts. According to electronic structure calculations, a cubic 1/1 CA, “Ca24Au88Al64” (CaAu3.67Al2.67) is proposed.

Comments

This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in Journal of the American Chemical Society, copyright © American Chemical Society after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b10358. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

American Chemical Society

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

Published Version

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