Chemistry of tantalum clusters in solution and on SiO2 supports: Analogies and contrasts

Sailendra Nemana, Norihiko L. Okamoto, Nigel D. Browning, Bruce C. Gates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Tantalum clusters have been synthesized from Ta(CH2Ph) 5 on the surface of porous fumed SiO2. When these clusters are small, incorporating, on average, several Ta atoms, their chemistry is similar to that of molecular tantalum clusters (and other early transition-metal) clusters. For example, The Ta-Ta bonds in these small supported clusters have been characterized by extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS), IR, and UV - vis spectroscopy, being similar to those in molecular analogues. The redox reactions of the supported clusters, characterized by X-ray absorption near-edge structure, are analogous to those of early transition-metal clusters in solution. In contrast to the largest of these clusters in solution and in the solid state, those supported on SiO 2 are raftlike, facilitating the substantial metal - support - oxygen bonding that is evident in the EXAFS spectra. Samples consisting of tantalum clusters on SiO2 catalyze alkane disproportionation and the conversion of methane with n-butane to give other alkanes, but catalytic properties of analogous clusters in solution have barely been explored.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8845-8854
Number of pages10
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Aug 14
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


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