Existence of Erbium Hexaboride Nanowires


Author to whom correspondence should be addressed. e-mail: ccheung2@unl.edu


The existence and stability of erbium hexaboride (ErB6) has been a controversial topic in literature due to cited failures in reproducing previous synthetic results. Here, we report our proof of the existence of ErB6 by demonstrating the synthesis of a mixture of ErB6 nanowires and erbium tetraboride (ErB4) nanoplatelets via palladium nanoparticle-assisted chemical vapor deposition. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy and selected-area electron diffraction showed that both the ErB6 nanowires and ErB4 nanoplatelets were single crystalline with expected cubic and tetragonal crystal structures, respectively. The observed lattice constants compared well with the theoretical structures calculated using density functional theory.