Chemical bonding and physical properties in quasicrystals and their related approximant phases: known facts and current perspectives



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Maciá Barber, Enrique Alfonso (2019) Chemical bonding and physical properties in quasicrystals and their related approximant phases: known facts and current perspectives. Applied sciences-basel, 9 (10). ISSN 2076-3417

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Quasicrystals are a class of ordered solids made of typical metallic atoms but they do not exhibit the physical properties that usually signal the presence of metallic bonding, and their electrical and thermal transport properties resemble a more semiconductor-like than metallic character. In this paper I first review a number of experimental results and numerical simulations suggesting that the origin of the unusual properties of these compounds can be traced back to two main features. For one thing, we have the formation of covalent bonds among certain atoms grouped into clusters at a local scale. Thus, the nature of chemical bonding among certain constituent atoms should play a significant role in the onset of non-metallic physical properties of quasicrystals bearing transition-metal elements. On the other hand, the self-similar symmetry of the underlying structure gives rise to the presence of an extended chemical bonding network due to a hierarchical nesting of clusters. This novel structural design leads to the existence of quite diverse wave functions, whose transmission characteristics range from extended to almost localized ones. Finally, the potential of quasicrystals as thermoelectric materials is discussed on the basis of their specific transport properties.

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©2019 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
This work is dedicated to the memory of Esther Belin-Ferré, with my warm gratitude for her support and continued interest in my research activities during the last two decades. I gratefully thank Uichiro Mizutani, Kaoru Kimura, and Tsunehiro Takeuchi for sharing useful comments and materials and for their continued interest in my work on thermoelectric properties of quasicrystals over the years. I thank Victoria Hernández for the critical reading of the manuscript and Laura Lao for her careful editorial assistance.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Al-cu-fe; Electrical-transport properties; Thermoelectric properties; Electronic-properties; Thermal-conductivity; Bandgap formation; Yb; Transition; Pseudogap; Clusters; Quasicrystals; Chemical bond; Thermoelectric materials
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Materials
Sciences > Physics > Solid state physics
ID Code:57216
Deposited On:04 Oct 2019 15:24
Last Modified:04 Oct 2019 15:24

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