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Title: Structural and Crystal Chemical Properties of Alkali Rare-earth Double Phosphates

When appropriately activated, alkali rare-earth double phosphates of the form: M3RE(PO4)2 (where M denotes an alkali metal and RE represents either a rare-earth element or Y or Sc) are of interest for use as inorganic scintillators for radiation detection at relatively long optical emission wavelengths. These compounds exhibit layered crystal structures whose symmetry properties depend on the relative sizes of the rare-earth and alkali-metal cations. Single-crystal X-ray and powder neutron diffraction methods were used here to refine the structures of the series of rare-earth double phosphate compounds: K3RE(PO4)2 with RE = Lu, Er, Ho, Dy, Gd, Nd, Ce, plus Y and Sc - as well as the compounds: A3Lu(PO4)2, with A = Rb, and Cs. The double phosphate K3Lu(PO4)2 was reported and structurally refined previously. This material had a hexagonal unit cell at room temperature with the Lu ion six-fold coordinated with oxygen atoms of the surrounding phosphate groups. Additionally two lower-temperature phases were observed for K3Lu(PO4)2. The first phase transition to a monoclinic P21/m phase occurred at ~230 K, and the Lu ion retained its six-fold coordination. The second K3Lu(PO4)2 phase transition occurred at ~130 K. The P21/m space group symmetry was retained, however, one of the phosphate groupsmore » rotated to increase the oxygen coordination number of Lu from six to seven. This structure then became isostructural with the room-temperature form of the compound K3Yb(PO4)2 reported here that also exhibits an additional high-temperature phase which occurs at T = 120 °C with a transformation to hexagonal P-3 space group symmetry and a Yb-ion coordination number reduction from seven to six. This latter result was confirmed using EXAFS. The single-crystal growth methods structural systematics, and thermal expansion properties of the present series of alkali rare-earth double phosphates, as determined by X-ray and neutron diffraction methods, are treated here.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  2. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Alloys and Compounds
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 655; Journal ID: ISSN 0925-8388
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE Rare earth alloys; Compounds