Inorganic Chemistry

Fluorine frolicking with eight friends

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Science  10 Feb 2017:
Vol. 355, Issue 6325, pp. 592-593
DOI: 10.1126/science.355.6325.592-e

Fluorine plays a supporting role in some of the best-known hypervalent compounds, such as PF5 and SF6. Goesten et al. now suggest that the halogen can also play the lead part in constrained environs. Certain zeolites bind fluoride at the center of a box motif with silicons at each of eight vertices. Using density functional theory, the authors report that all eight engage in stabilizing Si-F orbital interactions. Whereas hypervalency is more often associated with third- and fourth-row elements, in this motif, sterics preclude analogous bonding to the heavier halides.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 10.1073/pnas.1615742114 (2017).

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