Octahedral Metal Clusters


THE bonding in the Mo6Cl84+ and Ta6Cl122+ cations, both of which contain an octahedron of metal atoms, has recently been rationalized in terms of a 40-electron model1. The edges of the metal octahedron define the orientation of twelve bonds (type A) while the faces of the octahedron define the position of another eight (type B). In Mo6Cl84+ twenty-four metal electrons fill the A orbitals and sixteen chlorine σ electrons fill type B. In Ta6Cl122+ the roles of the sixteen metal and twenty-four chlorine σ electrons are interchanged. It is now possible to speculate on the occurrence of other metal octahedra if we require that this 40-electron rule be obeyed.

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  1. 1

    Kettle, S. F. A., Theoret. Chim. Acta, 3, 211 (1965).

  2. 2

    Wöhler, L., and Müller, W., Z. Anorg. Chem., 149, 125 (1925).

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KETTLE, S. Octahedral Metal Clusters. Nature 207, 1384–1385 (1965). https://doi.org/10.1038/2071384b0

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