Medium-sized Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32 nanoclusters with distinct gold-kernel structures and spectroscopic features

Wen Wu Xu, Yadong Li, Yi Gao, Xiao Cheng Zeng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


We have analyzed the structures of two medium-sized thiolate-protected gold nanoparticles (RS-AuNPs) Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32 and identified the distinct structural features in their Au kernels [Sci. Adv., 2015, 1, e1500425]. We find that both Au kernels of the Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32 nanoclusters can be classified as interpenetrating cuboctahedra. Simulated X-ray diffraction patterns of the RS-AuNPs with the cuboctahedral kernel are collected and then compared with the X-ray diffraction patterns of the RS-AuNPs of two other prevailing Au-kernels identified from previous experiments, namely the Ino-decahedral kernel and icosahedral kernel. The distinct X-ray diffraction patterns of RS-AuNPs with the three different types of Au-kernels can be utilized as signature features for future studies of structures of RS-AuNPs. Moreover, the simulated UV/Vis absorption spectra and Kohn-Sham orbital energy-level diagrams are obtained for the Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32, on the basis of time-dependent density functional theory computation. The extrapolated optical band-edges of Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32 are 1.1 eV and 1.25 eV, respectively. The feature peaks in the UV/Vis absorption spectra of the two clusters can be attributed to the d → sp electronic transition. Lastly, the catalytic activities of the Au40(SR)24 and Au52(SR)32 are examined using CO oxidation as a probe. Both medium-sized thiolate-protected gold clusters can serve as effective stand-alone nanocatalysts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1299-1304
Number of pages6
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 21 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

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