Probing the Nature of the Transition-Metal-Boron Bonds and Novel Aromaticity in Small Metal-Doped Boron Clusters Using Photoelectron Spectroscopy
Photoelectron spectroscopy combined with quantum chemistry has been a powerful approach to elucidate the structures and bonding of size-selected boron clusters (B n − ), revealing a prevalent planar world that laid the foundation for borophenes. Investigations of metal-doped boron clusters not only lead to novel structures but also provide important information about the metal-boron bonds that are critical to understanding the properties of boride materials. The current review focuses on recent advances in transition-metal-doped boron clusters, including the discoveries of metal-boron multiple bonds and metal-doped novel aromatic boron clusters. The study of the RhB − and RhB 2 O − clusters led to the discovery of the first quadruple bond between boron and a transition-metal atom, whereas a metal-boron triple bond was found in ReB 2 O − and IrB 2 O − . The ReB 4 − cluster was shown to be the first metallaborocycle with Möbius aromaticity, and the planar ReB 6 − cluster was found to exhibit aromaticity analogous to metallabenzenes. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Physical Chemistry, Volume 73 is April 2022. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.