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Hydrothermal Synthesis and Structure of Neptunium(V) Oxide

  • Tori Z. Forbes (a1), Peter C. Burns (a2), L. Soderholm (a3) and S. Skanthakumar (a4)

Abstract

Single crystals of Np2O5 have been synthesized by low-temperature hydrothermal reaction of a Np5+ stock solution with natural calcite crystals. The structure of Np2O5 was solved by direct methods and refined on the basis of F2 for all unique data collected on a Bruker X-ray diffractometer equipped with an APEX II CCD detector. Np2O5 is monoclinic, space group P2/c, with a = 8.168(2) Å, b = 6.584(1) Å, c = 9.3130(2) Å, β = 116.01(1)˚, V = 449.8(2) Å3, and Z = 1. The structure contains chains of edge-sharing neptunyl pentagonal bipyramids linked into sheets through cation-cation interactions with distorted neptunyl square bipyramids. Additional cation-cation interactions connect the sheets into a three-dimensional framework. The formation of Np2O5 on the surface of calcite crystals has important implications for the precipitation of isolated neptunyl phases in natural aqueous systems.

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