Journal article

Synthesis of FeH5: A layered structure with atomic hydrogen slabs

High pressure promotes the formation of polyhydrides with unusually high hydrogen-to-metal ratios. These polyhydrides have complex hydrogenic sublattices. We synthesized iron pentahydride (FeH5) by a direct reaction between iron and H-2 above 130 gigapascals in a laser-heated diamond anvil cell. FeH5 exhibits a structure built of atomic hydrogen only. It consists of intercalated layers of quasicubic FeH3 units and four-plane slabs of thin atomic hydrogen. The distribution of the valence electron density indicates a bonding between hydrogen and iron atoms but none between hydrogen atoms, presenting a two-dimensional metallic character. The discovery of FeH5 suggests a low-pressure path to make materials that approach bulk dense atomic hydrogen.


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