First Intermetallic Double Salt Created

IAS Prelims 2023

Scientists have successfully created the world’s first intermetallic double salt with platinum.

Researchers Anja-Verena Mudring and Volodymyr Smetana were the first to create and accurately characterize the compound.

Cesium platinide hydride, or 4Cs2Pt.CsH, forms a translucent ruby red crystal and can exist only in an inert environment similar to conditions that exist in outer space. It’s a new member of a rare family of compounds in which a metal forms a truly negatively charged ion.

This intriguing new compound was initially extracted from a cesium melt. The compound is highly unstable, with the platinum in the compound returning to its elemental state if it is exposed to oxygen.

Its unusual structure and properties, so different from typical intermetallic hydrides, are explained by the strong influence of relativistic effects on both cesium and platinum.