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Title: 29Si NMR Chemical Shifts in Crystalline and Amorphous Silicon Nitrides
We investigate 29Si nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) chemical shifts, δiso, of silicon nitride. Our goal is to relate the local structure to the NMR signal and, thus, provide the means to extract more information from the experimental 29Si NMR spectra in this family of compounds. We apply structural modeling and the gauge-included projector augmented wave (GIPAW) method within density functional theory (DFT) calculations. Our models comprise known and hypothetical crystalline Si3N4, as well as amorphous Si3N4 structures. We find good agreement with available experimental 29Si NMR data for tetrahedral Si[4] and octahedral Si[6] in crystalline Si3N4, predict the chemical shift of a trigonal-bipyramidal Si[5] to be about −120 ppm, and quantify the impact of Si-N bond lengths on 29Si δiso. We show through computations that experimental 29Si NMR data indicates that silicon dicarbodiimide, Si(NCN)2 exhibits bent Si-N-C units with angles of about 143° in its structure. A detailed investigation of amorphous silicon nitride shows that an observed peak asymmetry relates to the proximity of a fifth N neighbor in non-bonding distance between 2.5 and 2.8 Å to Si. We reveal the impact of both Si-N(H)-Si bond angle and Si-N bond length on 29Si δiso in hydrogenated silicon nitride structure, silicon more » diimide Si(NH)2. « less
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  1. Abstract

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is a powerful tool for obtaining precise information about the local bonding of materials, but difficult to interpret without a well-vetted dataset of reference spectra. The ability to predict NMR parameters and connect them to three-dimensional local environments is critical for understanding more complex, long-range interactions. New computational methods have revealed structural information available from29Si solid-state NMR by generating computed reference spectra for solids. Such predictions are useful for the identification of new silicon-containing compounds, and serve as a starting point for determination of the local environments present in amorphous structures. In this study, we have used 42 silicon sites as a benchmarking set to compare experimentally reported29Si solid-state NMR spectra with those computed by CASTEP-NMR and Vienna Ab Initio Simulation Program (VASP). Data-driven approaches enable us to identify the source of discrepancies across a range of experimental and computational results. The information from NMR (in the form of an NMR tensor) has been validated, and in some cases corrected, in an effort to catalog these for the local spectroscopy database infrastructure (LSDI), where over 10,00029Si NMR tensors for crystalline materials have been computed. Knowledge of specific tensor values can serve as the basismore »for executing NMR experiments with precision, optimizing conditions to capture the elements accurately. The ability to predict and compare experimental observables from a wide range of structures can aid researchers in their chemical assignments and structure determination, since the computed values enables the extension beyond tables of typical chemical shift (or shielding) ranges.

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