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Keywords:

  • gas-phase clusters;
  • genetic algorithms;
  • magnesium;
  • photodissociation spectroscopy;
  • structure elucidation
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Working out the gas charge: Only one structure type is known for bulk MgO. In contrast, quantum chemical calculations combined with infrared multiple photon dissociation experiments demonstrate that neutral and cationic gas-phase clusters of MgO display unusual structural diversity and flexibility (see picture).