Crystal structures, electrical properties, and electron energy-loss spectroscopy of the sodium and potassium tetragonal tungsten bronzes

Levi Tegg*, Georg Haberfehlner, Gerald Kothleitner, Erich Kisi, Vicki J. Keast

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


he tungsten bronzes (MxWO3) are non-stoichiometric metal oxides which have attracted interest for their potential applications in plasmonics. Although the cubic structures of the sodium tungsten bronzes (NaxWO3) have been extensively studied, reports into the tetragonal-II structures (TII-) of any tungsten bronze are comparatively rare. In this work, TII-NaxWO3 and TII-KxWO3 were prepared by a furnace-assisted method, and characterised by X-ray and neutron powder diffraction, selected-area electron diffraction and electron energy-loss spectroscopy (EELS). A structural determination of TII-NaxWO3 was performed in the space group I4∕m, in a ××222supercell of the P4∕mbm TII-KxWO3 structure. Density functional theory is then used to calculate the valence electronic structure and optical properties to support the EELS measurements. Similar to the cubic structures, the conduction band of TII- is composed of hybridised O 2p and W 5d states, which is filled by electrons donated from the inserted Na or K. The O sites which are in- plane with the W sites are found to have highly localised bands, resulting in low-energy interband tran-sitions in the a∕b direction of the unit cell. In contrast, purely free-electron behaviour is observed in the c- direction below 2 eV. High-quality plasmon resonances are thus only observed in the c-direction, with energy and quality similar to those of the cubic structures. These anisotropic optical properties make TII- NaxWO3 and TII-KxWO3 interesting materials for further study as potential plasmonic materials.
Original languageEnglish
Article number159200
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Alloys and Compounds
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Computer simulations
  • Crystal structure
  • Electron energy loss spectroscopy
  • Neutron diffraction
  • Optical properties
  • Oxide materials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science

Treatment code (Nähere Zuordnung)

  • Basic - Fundamental (Grundlagenforschung)

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