Symposium 2020 ‘Exploring the Unknown’ the chemistry they didn't tell you about

From September onwards, every two weeks we will announce one of our six speakers. The speakers are from academia and industry, from The Netherlands and abroad!

The first speaker we would like to announce is:

  • Prof. dr. Stefanie Dehnen from the University of Marburg. Her research focuses on multinary, non-oxidic cluster and network compounds which are relevant in both inorganic and materials chemistry. We highly recommend that you come listen to her lecture titled “Multinary Clusters: From Uncommon Structures and Bonding to Potential Use”.


Multinary Clusters: From Uncommon Structures and Bonding to Potential Use

Stefanie Dehnen*

Fachbereich Chemie and Wissenschaftliches Zentrum für Materialwissenschaften, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Hans-Meerwein-Straße 4, D-35032 Marburg, Germany.


Multinary clusters comprising main group metal atoms and one or two further components – further (semi)metal atoms and/or chalcogen atoms and/or organic substituents – have attracted interest in recent times, owing to a number of uncommon properties. The most obvious feature is a large variety of different cluster compositions and architectures, but the materials do also show unexpected functionalities.1,2

Depending on the elemental composition, the clusters either belong to so-called intermetalloid clusters [Mx@E13/14yE15z]q– (E13/14 = Ga···Tl or Ge···Pb; E15 = As···Bi), hence comprising (semi)metal atoms in negative oxidation states,3 or they form chalcogenidometalate architectures of the general type [Mx(RE14)yE16z]q– (M = (transition) metal) with or without functional organic ligands R.4,5

While unsubstituted multinary clusters like [Co@Sn6Sb6]3–,6 [U@Bi12]3– 7 or [Au6(Ge3As)(Ge2As2)3]3− 8 mainly serve to study structural variations and to gain new insights into cluster formation and bonding,10 organic substituents on the cluster surfaces, as in [Mn4Sn4Se13(SeMe)4]6–,9 shed light on reactivities, and they may also cause extreme non-linear optical properties, rendering compounds like [(StySn)4S6],11 [(CySn)4Se6],12 or [{(CoMo)3S4Sn}(PhSn)3S6] 13  potentially useful, innovative materials.


[1] P. Feng, X. Bu, N. Zheng, Acc. Chem. Res. 2005, 38, 293. [2] S. Scharfe, F. Kraus, S. Stegmaier, A. Schier, T. F. Fässler, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2011, 50, 3630. [3] R. J. Wilson, N. Lichtenberger, B. Weinert, S. Dehnen, Chem. Rev. 2019, 119, 8506. [4] S. Santner, J. Heine, S. Dehnen, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 54, 876. [5] E. Dornsiepen, E. Geringer, N. Rinn, S. Dehnen, Coord. Chem. Rev. 2019, 380, 136. [6] R. J. Wilson, F. Hastreiter, K. Reiter, P. Büschelberger, R. Wolf, R. Gschwind, F. Weigend, S. Dehnen, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018, 57, 15359. [7] N. Lichtenberger, R. J. Wilson, A. R. Eulenstein, W. Massa, R. Clérac, F. Weigend, S. Dehnen, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 9033. [8] F. Pan, L. Guggolz, F. Weigend, S. Dehnen, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, doi.org/10.1002/anie.202008108. [9] B. Peters, S. Santner, C. Donsbach, P. Vöpel, B. Smarsly, S. Dehnen, Chem. Sci. 2019, 10, 5211. [10] S. Mitzinger, L. Broeckaert, W. Massa, F. Weigend, S. Dehnen, Nat. Commun. 2016, 7, 10480. [11] N. W. Rosemann, J. P. Eußner, A. Beyer, S. W. Koch, K. Volz, S. Dehnen, S. Chatterjee, Science 2016, 352, 1301. [12] E. Dornsiepen, F. Dobener, S. Chatterjee, S. Dehnen, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, 17041. [13] E. Dornsiepen, F. Pieck, R. Tonner, S. Dehnen, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019, 141, 16494.

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