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VOLUME 68 (1998) | ISSUE 9 | PAGE 695
Prismane C8: a new form of carbon?
Our numerical calculations on small carbon clusters point to the existence of a metastable three-dimensional eight-atom cluster Cs which has a shape of a six-atom triangular prism with two excess atoms above and below its bases. We gave this cluster the name "prismane". The binding energy of the prismane equals to 5.1 eV/atom, i.e., is 0.45 eV/atom lower than the binding energy of the stable one-dimensional eight-atom cluster and 2.3 eV/atom lower than the binding energy of the bulk graphite or diamond. Molecular dynamics simulations give evidence for a rather high stability of the prismane, the activation energy for a prismane decay being about 0.8 eV. The prismane lifetime increases rapidly as the temperature decreases indicating a possibility of experimental observation of this cluster.