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Ultra-incompressibility and high energy density of ReN8 with infinite nitrogen chains


Nitrogen-rich transition metal nitrides are of great interests due to the unique physical and chemical properties. Here, we perform a detailed structural investigation of ReN8 in the pressure range of 0–200 GPa via particle swarm optimization algorithm and first-principles calculations. Interestingly, four ReN8 phases are firstly revealed to be stable within 200 GPa, N2 dimers are found to be preferred in T-ReN8 at pressure lower than 15.8 GPa and the infinite N chains become dominated in M-, T’- and M’-ReN8 at higher pressure up to 200 GPa. We find that the Young’s moduli of M- and T’-ReN8, about 850 GPa along [0.88 0 0.47] and [0 0 1] direction, are comparable to cubic BN, due to the presence of electronic accumulation in the N chains. Furthermore, M- and T’-ReN8 are found to be of high energy density of ~ 1.9 kJ/g (~ 11.0 kJ/cm3).

Graphical abstract

Ultra-incompressibility of ReN8 in special direction due to the high electronic accumulations in the polynitrogen chains.

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L. Wu thanks the Foundation of Education Department of Hebei Province under Grant No. ZD2020103. The numerical calculations in this paper have been partially done on the supercomputing system in the High Performance Computing Center of Yanshan University.

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Correspondence to Lailei Wu, Jie Sun or Huiyang Gou.

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Wu, L., Zhou, P., Li, Y. et al. Ultra-incompressibility and high energy density of ReN8 with infinite nitrogen chains. J Mater Sci 56, 3814–3826 (2021).

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