Atomic clusters
--> See Molecular clusters

Atomic clusters can be either pure, formed from a single atomic species or from a mixture.

Classifications criteria:
  • by predominant bond nature: metallic, covalent, ionic;
  • by atomic count: “micro” < 20, “small” < 100 < “large”
  • by electric / magnetic properties

For the majority of atomic species there are clusters of certain atomic counts (so-called “magic numbers”) that have preponderent representation in the mass spectra, an indication of their greater stability with respect to dissociation when compared to their neighboring atomic counts.
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