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Intermetallic Studies and Bonding Concepts



This essay for EurJIC's cluster issue on polar intermetallics, clusters and cluster complexes introduces the reader to the difficulties in finding new and novel intermetallics among a wide variety of possibilities, inasmuch as most of the elements of the periodic table are metals. Like metal atoms may form naked clusters or be differently charged, such as Zintl cations or polyanions. Discrete clusters may also be incorporated as building blocks in polar intermetallics or be condensed into infinite one-, two-, or three-dimensional arrays. In all cases, it is important to explore the unknown before (physical) properties can be measured and applications come into view.

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