Interactions between well-mixed fine powders of As2O3, P2O5, MoO3, WO3 and Nb2O5 at different stoichiometry in quartz ampoules under vacuum at ~1000 °C in the presence of metallic molybdenum (or niobium), over several weeks, led to shiny dichroic crystalline materials being formed in cooler parts of the reaction vessel. An addition of small quantities of metals-Mo or Nb-was made with the aim of partially reducing their highly oxidized Mo(VI), W(VI) or Nb(V) species to corresponding Mo(V), W(V) and Nb(IV) centers, in order to form mixed valence solids. Sublimed crystals of four new compounds were investigated using a variety of techniques, with prime emphasis on the X-ray analysis, followed by spectroscopy (diffusion reflectance, IR, Raman and EPR), second harmonic generation (SHG), thermal analysis under N2 and air atmosphere, and single crystals electrical conductivity studies. The results evidenced the formation of new complex solids of previously unknown compositions and structures. Three out of four compounds crystallized in non-centrosymmetric space groups and represent layered 2D polymeric puckered structures that being stacked on each other form 3D lattices. All new solids exhibit strong second-harmonic-generation (SHG effect; based on YAG 1064 nm tests with detection of 532 nm photons), and a rare photosalient effect when crystals physically move in the laser beam. Single crystals' electrical conductivity of the four new synthesized compounds was measured, and the results showed their semiconductor behavior. Values of band gaps of these new solids were determined using diffusion reflectance spectroscopy in the visible region. Aspects of new solids' practical usefulness are discussed.



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© 2021 The authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).


band gaps, crystal structures, EPR spectra, mixed valence, oxide bronzes, second-harmonic-generation, single crystal electrical conductivity

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Molecules (Basel, Switzerland)