A two-dimensional artificial crystal, which is made up of artificial atoms - identical Al clusters with nanometer size and spacing, was fabricated by taking advantage of surface-mediated clustering on a growth template. In situ scanning tunneling microscopy analysis and first-principles total energy calculations were used to determine the atomic structure of the Al nanoclusters. The Al clusters exhibit more remarkable thermal stability than the In clusters we reported previously. Based on our systematic observations and calculations, the formation mechanism and the high stability of these magic clusters are discussed.
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