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Unravelling Local Atomic Order of the Anionic Sublattice in M(Al1−xGax)4 with M=Sr and Ba by Using NMR Spectroscopy and Quantum Mechanical Modelling

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Pecher,  Oliver
Chemical Metal Science, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Haarmann,  Frank
Chemical Metal Science, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Pecher, O., Mausolf, B., Peters, V., Lamberts, K., Korthaus, A., & Haarmann, F. (2016). Unravelling Local Atomic Order of the Anionic Sublattice in M(Al1−xGax)4 with M=Sr and Ba by Using NMR Spectroscopy and Quantum Mechanical Modelling. Chemistry – A European Journal, 22(49), 17833-17842. doi:10.1002/chem.201602475.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002C-4050-E
Abstract
The quasibinary section of the intermetallic phases MAl4 and MGa4 with M=Sr and Ba have been characterised by means of X-ray diffraction (XRD) studies and differential thermal analysis. The binary phases show complete miscibility and form solid solutions M(Al1−xGax)4 with M=Sr and Ba. These structures crystallise in the BaAl4 structure type with four- and five-bonded Al and/or Ga atoms (denoted as Al(4b), Al(5b), Ga(4b), and Ga(5b), respectively) that form a polyanionic Al/Ga sublattice. Solid state 27Al NMR spectroscopic analysis and quantum mechanical (QM) calculations were applied to study the bonding of the Al centres and the influence of Al/Ga substitution, especially in the regimes with low degrees of substitution. M(Al1−xGax)4 with M=Sr and Ba and 0.925≤x≤0.975 can be described as a matrix of the binary majority compound in which a low amount of the Ga atoms has been substituted by Al atoms. In good agreement with the QM calculations, 27Al NMR investigations and single crystal XRD studies prove a preferred occupancy of Al(4b) for these substitution regimes. Furthermore, two different local Al environments were found, namely isolated Al(4b1) atoms and Al(4b2), due to the formation of Al(4b)–Al(4b) pairs besides isolated Al(4b) atoms within the polyanionic sublattice. QM calculations of the electric field gradient (EFG) using superlattice structures under periodic boundary conditions are in good agreement with the NMR spectroscopic results.