IRG 2: Creating Multifunctional Materials From Superatoms


The emergence of unanticipated collective properties in clusters of atoms, called “superatoms,” offers a new class of fundamental building units that can be used to extend the atomic periodic table for the development of new materials.

IRG2 assembles these chemically precise clusters (“superatoms”) into new classes of functional materials with unprecedented levels of complexity and functionality. Since 2014, the IRG2 team has succeeded in assembling superatomis into atomically precise solids, controlling the dimensionality of the resulting superatom solids, and producing and studying new materials properties. This has resulted in a rich library of superatomic crystals with varied compositions, structures and dimensionality, which provide a bridge between traditional atomic solids, molecular solids, and nanocrystal arrays while providing tunability and atomic precision.
Using this research as a springboard, the IRG2 team is currently exploring topics such as the synthesis of superatomic materials, controlling the dimensionality of superatom structures, and researching further the material properties of superatoms.



Faculty Leads:  Xavier Roy, Xiaoyang Zhu
IRG Fellows: Amymarie Bartholomew, Qiuyang Li
Participating Researchers: Simon Billinge, Andrew Crowther, Cory Dean, Ann McDermott, Andrew Millis, Colin Nuckolls, David Reichman, Xavier Roy, Michael Steigerwald, Latha Venkataraman, Yuan Yang, Xiaoyang Zhu



Some of IRG2's key research findings include the following: