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Science. 2003 Mar 28;299(5615):2049-52.

The infrared spectrum of Al2H6 in solid hydrogen.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, University of Virginia, Post Office Box 400319, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4319, USA.

Erratum in

  • Science. 2003 May 2;300(5620):741.
  • Science. 2003 Apr 11;300(5617):251.


Although many volatile binary boron hydride compounds are known, binary aluminum hydride chemistry is limited to the polymeric (AlH3)(n) solid. The reaction of laser-ablated aluminum atoms and pure H2 during codeposition at 3.5 kelvin, followed by ultraviolet irradiation and annealing to 6.5 kelvin, allows dimerization of the intermediate AlH3 photolysis product to form Al2H6. The Al2H6 molecule is identified by seven new infrared absorptions that are accurately predicted by quantum chemical calculations for dibridged Al2H6, a molecule that is isostructural with diborane.

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