Small silicon-oxygen dianions in the gas phase

Thomas Sommerfeld, Klaus Franzreb, Richard C. Sobers, Peter Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Cs+ sputtering of a silicon target with simultaneous exposure of the Si surface to O2 gas has produced small silicon-oxygen dianions Sin O2 n + 12 - (2 ≤ n ≤ 8) as well as Si5 O102 -. These dianions were observed by mass spectrometry for ion flight times of a few 10-5 s. The two smallest species, Si2 O52 - and Si3 O72 -, have been identified unambiguously by their isotopic abundances. Ab initio electronic structure calculations are used to study the geometrical structure of the three most abundant species Sin O2 n + 12 - (n = 3, 4, 5), and for all three dianions several stable isomers are found. The structural motifs of the low-energy isomers are analyzed, and include in particular structures with trivalent oxygen atoms akin to impurities in solid silicon.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)216-221
Number of pages6
JournalChemical Physics
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Oct 26 2006


  • Ab initio calculations
  • Dianions
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Silicon oxides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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