Contribution of Clusters Physics to Materials Science and Technology: From Isolated Clusters to Aggregated Materials

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Joel Davenas, P.M. Rabette
Springer Netherlands, 1986 - Science - 646 pages
During the last decade there has been an increasing interest in clusters and small particles because of the peculiar proper ties induced by their large area to volume ratio. For that reason small particles are often considered as an intermediate state of matter at the border between atomic (or molecular) chemistry, and physics of the condensed matter. The importance of the surface effect can explain the anomalous properties, for example the exis tence of the five fold symmetry observed in different circumstan ces '(beams of rare gas clusters, gold particles deposited on a substrate). However the question of the critical size at which the transition to bulk properties occurs cannot be simply answered, since the reply depends on the peculiar property which is studied. The importance of the size effect was emphasized in the last International Meetings. However the situation remains confused in most cases since the exact role of the cluster environment cannot be clearly elucidated and is a main difficulty, except in cluster beam experiments. In fact ideally free clusters constitute a labo ratory exception. In most applications small particles must be supported on a surface or embedded in a matrix, in order to be stabilized, which obviously shows the role of the environment.

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Mass spectrometric detection
Experiments on clusters in the gas phase

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