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Science. 1992 Jul 24;257(5069):511-4.

Existence of an orientational electric dipolar response in c60 single crystals.


The dielectric constant in and conductivity sigma of undoped C(60) single crystals have been measured as a function of temperature, 10 K < T < 330 K, and frequency, 0.2 kilohertz < f < 100 kilohertz. On cooling below the first-order structural phase transition at 260 K, a Debye-like relaxational contribution to the dielectric response is observed, which requires the presence of permanent electric dipoles. The relaxation rate is thermally activated with a broad distribution of energies centered at 270 millielectron volts. The existence of a dipole moment in C(60) is unexpected, because it is precluded by symmetry for the pure ordered cubic phase. These data suggest that the high degree of frozen-in orientational disorder of the C(60) molecules is responsible for the existence of electric dipolar activity.

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