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CHEE 4301
Nanomaterials and
their characterisation

Why Study Crystal Structures


Traditionally, metals and ceramics are crystals and
their crystalline nature affects their properties.
The earliest crystallographers discovered that the
naturally developed external facets of substance
were related to the regularity of their internal
structures.

Lecture 2
Crystal Structure 1
Professor Jin Zou
Contact details: Office Room 75-108
Telephone: 3346 3195
Email: j.zou@uq.edu.au

Lithium Pegmatite

Definitions of Crystalline State

Crystal Lattices and Unit Cells

A crystal consists of identical structural units, consisting


of one or more atoms, which are regularly and
periodically arranged in three dimensions. This
regularity extends over thousands and millions of
molecular dimensions.
crystal structure = lattice + basis
Note:
The smallest building
basis
blocks of a crystal are
referred to as the basis,
the periodic arrangement
is described by the lattice.

lattice
points

crystal structure

Two Dimensional Parallelogram Cells

To describe a crystal, it is convenient to ignore the basis


and to focus on the lattice.
The lattice is a three-dimensional array of points (lattice
points), each of which has identical surroundings.
Notes on Unit Cells:
[a Unit Cell represents a small
volume of a lattice
[the whole lattice can be
reconstructed by repeating this unit
cell without empty space in
between
[the unit cell is defined by three
independent unit vectors, a, b, and c
[the direction of the unit vectors a, b,
and c defines the direction of the x, y
and z axes, called the crystal axes

Variables in Unit Cells

Primitive Cells

Multiple Cells

Parallelogram cells can be either primitive or


multiple. In general, there are infinite
number of parallelogram cells for a given
lattice.

A three dimensional Unit Cell can be


described by the relative lengths of three
independent unit vectors (a, b, and c) and
three independent angles between them (,
, and ).
is angle between b and c
is angle between c and a
is angle between a and b

In 2D case

b 3 variables
0

6 variables

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Unit Cells & Lattice Parameters


For a given lattice, an Unit Cell is defined as the
smallest parallelogram cell that contains less
variables (representing the highest symmetry of
the lattice). - 90 and 120 do not count as
variables.
Lattice parameters a & b are lengths of independent
sides of an Unit Cell.

Triclinic System

Seven Crystal Systems


Seven distinct Unit Cells can be recognised
for all possible crystalline materials. The
seven Unit Cells are associated with seven
systems of crystal axes called the seven
Crystal Systems.
z
Triclinic system
Monoclinic system
Orthorhombic system
Tetragonal system
Cubic system
Hexagonal system y
Rhombohedral system

Monoclinic System

In the triclinic system, a b c, .

In the monoclinic system, a b c, 90 .

6 variables

4 variables

Orthorhombic System

Tetragonal System

In the orthorhombic system, a b c, 90.

In the tetragonal system, a b c, 90.

3 variables

2 variables

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Cubic System

Hexagonal System
In the hexagonal system,
a b c, 90 and 120.

In the cubic system, a b c and 90.

c
b

1 variable

2 variables

Rhombohedral (Trigonal) System

Crystal
systems
Triclinic
Monoclinic
Orthorhombic
Tetragonal
Cubic
Hexagonal
Rhombohedral

Summary of Crystal Systems

In the trigonal system, a b c, ( 90)

Necessary
conditions
a b c,
a b c, 90
a b c, 90
a b c, 90
a b c, 90
a b c, 90, 120
a b c, ( 90)

2 variables

Fourteen Bravais Lattices

14 Bravais lattices

Within some Crystal Systems, different lattice


types are possible to represent the highest
symmetry of the lattice. These types are

Why cubic
does not
have a Ccentred
lattice?

P = primitive
I = body-centred

F = face-centred
C = base (one pair of parallel sides)-centred

Altogether there are fourteen different ways of


distributing lattice points to make 3D lattices.

These 14 lattices are called the Bravais Lattices.

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Nearest Neighbours/Coordination Number


Each atom has neighbours
The coordination number (Z) is the number of first
nearest neighbours
In the case of the 2D square lattice, Z = 4
In turn, second nearest neighbours can be
determined

Lattice Parameter
In the simple case, the lattice parameter of an
unit cell is determined by the size of atom
In the square lattice, the lattice parameter is the
length of the side of the unit cell a=2Ratom

a
First nearest
neighbours
Second nearest
neighbours

Atomic Packing Fraction

Face-centred Cubic - Packing Fraction

The atomic packing fraction (APF) is the fraction of


unit cell occupied by atoms
Assume that atoms are spheres with a specific
radius, the APF can be calculated.
For the case of (2-D) simple
squared unit cell

APF( area ) =

2
Ratom
1 4
4

a2

and a = 2 Ratom
Ratom

APF( area ) =

= 0.79 = 79%

Popular Crystal Structures


Simple Cubic
Z= 6
a = 2R
V =a3 = 8R3
APF=0.57=57%
1 atom/unit cell

Body Centre Cubic (BCC)


Z= 8
a = (4/ 3)R
V =a3 = (64/3 3 )R3
APF=0.68=68%
2 atom/unit cell

Ratom

Number of atoms inside an unit cell (for the given case):


8 corner atoms = 81/8 = 1,
6 face atoms = 61/2 = 3,
so that total number of atoms = 4 atoms

Volume of 4 atoms = 4x(4/3)r3


Volume of unit cell = a3=(2 2 r)3
4 3 1
r
8 + 1 6
8
2
APF( vol ) = 3
a3

and a = 2 2r
APF( vol ) =

3 2

= 0.74 = 74%

Packing Structures
What is the APF
of close-packed
layer (assuming
2D)?

Face Centre Cubic (FCC)


Z= 12
a = (2 2)R
V =a3 = (16 2)R3
APF=0.74=74%
4 atom/unit cell

Hexagonal Closest Packing


Z= 12
a = 2R
V = (8 2)R3
APF=0.74=74%
2 atom/unit cell
c/a=1.633

Simple Cubic

Simple
Hexagonal

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Two Common Close-Packed Layers


Face-centred cubic
structure

Two Common Close-Packed Layers

Hexagonal close-packed
structure

B
A

http://www.physics-in-a-nutshell.com/article/11#the-hcp-structure

What Determines Crystal Structure


Chemical bonding
Size of atoms in structure (especially in
compounds)
Temperature
The crystal structure is the lowest energy
configuration of atoms.
As temperature varies, this can change
For example - Fe (Iron)

Summary of the Lecture


Concept of lattices and unit cell
7 crystal systems and 14 Bravais lattices
Concepts of
nearest neighbours
coordination number (Z)
lattice parameters (a)
atomic packing fraction (APF)

What Determines Crystal Structure

At high T, Fe has a BCC structure (T>1394C): -Fe


For 912C < T < 1394C, Fe structure is FCC: -Fe
For T < 912C, Fe structure is BCC (again): -Fe
Below 600C, -Fe becomes magnetic

Homework
Many elements, such as C, Si and Ge, have a
special structure Diamond structure, a special FCC
structure containing 8 atoms (of the same kind) in
each unit cell. As a result, there are two atoms relate
to each lattice point.
Do your literature search (from internet) to find out
and draw the diamond structure.
Based on the obtained structure, determine
the numbers of first and second nearest neighbours
the lattice parameter (assume r is the radius of the
atom)
the atomic packing fraction

References & Useful Websites


Books
Crystallography, W. Borchardt-Ott
Crystallography and Crystal Defects, A. Kelly, G.W.
Groves, and P. Kidd
The Basics of Crystallography and Diffraction, C.
Hammond
The Structure of Materials, S.M. Allen and E.L.
Thomas

Websites
http://www.matter.org.uk/matscicdrom/manual/xl.html
http://www.msm.cam.ac.uk/phase-trans/2001/
intro.cryst.pdf