Chemists at UC Davis have made the first stable compound with a five-fold bond between two metal atoms. The work with chromium could give researchers new insights into the nature of chemical bonding.
Much of chemistry is about understanding how bonds are made and broken. For most of the history of chemistry, only single, double or triple bonds were known. Multiple bonds are particularly important in carbon chemistry, but only certain metals are theoretically capable of more than triple bonds, said Philip Power, professor of chemistry at UC Davis and senior author on the paper.
The dark red crystals were synthesized by Tailuan (Peter) Nguyen, a graduate student in Powers laboratory. The chromium-based compound is stable at room temperature but decomposes in the presence of water, and spontaneously ignites when exposed to air.
Andy Fell | EurekAlert!
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