Low-density framework form of crystalline silicon with a wide optical band gap

Jan Gryko, Paul F. McMillan, Robert F. Marzke, Ganesh K. Ramachandran, Derek Patton, Sudip K. Deb, Otto F. Sankey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

277 Scopus citations


Synthesis of a guest-free clathrate form of crystalline silicon was achieved by successive vacuum treatment and density separation of NaxSi136-based materials. The new allotrope of silicon has an open framework structure based upon slightly distorted tetrahedral atoms bound into five- and six-membered ring structures, and corresponds to a fully saturated and condensed fullerane-type solid. Theoretical calculations indicate that the new form of silicon should be a wide bandgap semiconductor. This prediction is borne out by experiment: electrical conductivity and optical absorption measurements yield a band gap of 1.9 eV, approximately twice the value of "normal" semiconducting silicon.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R7707-R7710
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Sep 15 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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