Structural properties of nanoclusters: Energetic, thermodynamic, and kinetic effects

F Baletto, R Ferrando

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1599 Citations (Scopus)
818 Downloads (Pure)


The structural properties of free nanoclusters are reviewed. Special attention is paid to the interplay of energetic, thermodynamic, and kinetic factors in the explanation of cluster structures that are actually observed in experiments. The review starts with a brief summary of the experimental methods for the production of free nanoclusters and then considers theoretical and simulation issues, always discussed in close connection with the experimental results. The energetic properties are treated first, along with methods for modeling elementary constituent interactions and for global optimization on the cluster potential-energy surface. After that, a section on cluster thermodynamics follows. The discussion includes the analysis of solid-solid structural transitions and of melting, with its size dependence. The last section is devoted to the growth kinetics of free nanoclusters and treats the growth of isolated clusters and their coalescence. Several specific systems are analyzed
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-423
Number of pages53
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2005


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