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J Phys Chem A. 2013 Feb 28;117(8):1765-72. doi: 10.1021/jp3119692. Epub 2013 Feb 18.

Asymmetric partitioning of metals among cluster anions and cations generated via laser ablation of mixed aluminum/Group 6 transition metal targets.

Author information

1
Department of Chemistry, Indiana University, 800 East Kirkwood Avenue, Bloomington, Indiana 47405, USA.

Abstract

While high-power laser ablation of metal alloys indiscriminately produces gas-phase atomic ions in proportion to the abundance of the various metals in the alloy, gas-phase ions produced by moderate-power laser ablation sources coupled with molecular beams are formed by more complicated mechanisms. A mass spectrometric study that directly compares the mass distributions of cluster anions and cations generated from laser ablation of pure aluminum, an aluminum/molybdenum mixed target, and an aluminum/tungsten mixed target is detailed. Mass spectra of anionic species generated from the mixed targets showed that both tungsten and molybdenum were in higher abundance in the negatively charged species than in the target material. Mass spectra of the cationic species showed primarily Al(+) and aluminum oxide and hydroxide cluster cations. No molybdenum- or tungsten-containing cluster cations were definitively assigned. The asymmetric distribution of aluminum and Group 6 transition metals in cation and anion cluster composition is attributed to the low ionization energy of atomic aluminum and aluminum suboxide clusters. In addition, the propensity of both molybdenum and tungsten to form metal oxide cluster anions under the same conditions that favor metallic aluminum cluster anions is attributed to differences in the optical properties of the surface oxide that is present in the metal powders used to prepare the ablation targets. Mechanisms of mixed metal oxide clusters are considered.

PMID:
23413829
DOI:
10.1021/jp3119692

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