Cover Picture: Lithium Subhydrides under Pressure and Their Superatom-like Building Blocks (ChemPlusChem 11/2012)



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The cover picture shows that at pressures achievable in a diamond anvil cell LiH may react with elemental Li to yield the lithium subhydride, Li5H. In their Communication on page 969 ff., J. Hooper and E. Zurek use an evolutionary algorithm coupled with first-principles calculations to predict a new class of compounds in the lithium-rich region of the lithium/hydrogen phase diagram under pressure. The building block of all of the LimH, 5<m<9, structures predicted in this study is an Li8H cluster, which can be thought of as a superalkali atom. Detailed theoretical calculations show that the geometries and electronic structures of the subhydrides are analogous to that of the well-known alkali metal suboxides. Pictures created using Endeavour 1.7, Crystal Impact, Bonn, Germany (2012);, E-mail:

Cartoon 1.