Abstract

The crystal structure of seeligerite, Pb3IO4Cl3, from the San Rafael mine, Sierra Gorda, Chile, was solved in the space group Cmm2, and refined to R = 3.07%. The unit-cell parameters are: a = 7.971(2), b = 7.976(2), c = 27.341(5) Å, V = 1738.3(6) Å3 and Z = 8. The crystal structure consists of a stacking sequence along [001] of square-net layers of O atoms and square-net layers of Cl atoms with Pb2+ and I5+ cations located in the voids of the packing. As is typical of cations with a stereoactive lone-pair of electrons, Pb2+ and I5+ adopt strongly-asymmetrical configurations. Pb2+ cations occur in a variety of coordination polyhedra, ranging from anticubes and monocapped anticubes to pyramidal ‘one-sided’ coordinations. I5+ is coordinated by a square of four oxygen atoms: I1 and I3 exhibit a ‘one-sided’ coordination, whereas I2 has square-planar coordination.

The TEM investigation has revealed additional superlattice reflections (which were not registered by X-ray diffraction (XRD)) in the hk0 diffraction pattern of seeligerite based upon a 0.158 Å−1 square net, which can be interpreted as arising from a 20-cation super-sheet motif (12.6 Å ×12.6 Å), likely related to a further level of Pb-I order superimposed upon the 8-site motif identified by XRD.

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