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Creators/Authors contains: "Gallington, Leighanne C."

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  1. Many functional materials have relatively low decomposition temperatures ( T ≤ 400 °C), which makes their synthesis challenging using conventional high-temperature solid-state chemistry. Therefore, non-conventional techniques such as metathesis, hydrothermal, and solution chemistry are often employed to access low-temperature phases; the discovery of new chemistries is needed to expand access to these phases. This contribution discusses the use of triphenylphosphine (PPh 3 ) as a molten flux to synthesize superconducting iron selenide (Fe 1+δ Se) at low temperature ( T = 325 °C). Powder X-ray diffraction and magnetism measurements confirm the successful formation of superconducting iron selenide while nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and in situ X-ray diffraction show that the formation of superconducting FeSe at low temperatures is enabled by an adduct between the triphenylphosphine and selenium. Exploration of the Fe–Se–PPh 3 phase space indicates that the PPh 3 –Se adduct effectively reduces the chemical potential of the selenium at high concentrations of triphenylphosphine. This contribution demonstrates that the use of a poorly-solvating yet reactive flux has the potential to enable the synthesis of new low-temperature phases of solid materials.