Samarium Nitride

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Samarium is a lanthanide element with the atomic number 62 and the symbol Sm. It is a moderately hard silvery metal that slowly oxidizes in air. It is used in x-ray lasers, as an ionizing radiation source and for chemical reactions. It is also found in compounds such as samarium oxide SmO, monochalcogenides such as SmS, SmSe and SmTe and in samarium(II) iodide. Samarium is the 40th most common element in Earth’s crust and it is mined mainly from bastnasite, monazite, samarskite and cerite deposits.

samarium nitride is an interesting compound with metallic properties, low density and high strength. It is a member of the rare-earth nitrides, a family of compounds with varying physical and electronic properties. The members of the family range from ferromagnetic semiconductors to half-metals to semiconducting metals. The large exchange splitting of the conduction bands in SmN favors equal-spin triplet pairing with p-wave symmetry and makes it a promising candidate for superconductivity.

We investigated the structural and electrochemical characteristics of divalent samarium in LiCl-KCl eutectic melt using cyclic voltammetry, UV-vis spectroscopy and laser-induced luminescence. The results showed that Sm 2+ ions can be reduced to the trivalent state in the molten salt. The samarium nitride crystallized from the eutectic melt under high pressure and the values of lattice constants, bulk modulus and band structure obtained from tight binding linear muffin-tin orbital (TB-LMTO) calculations were in good agreement with available experimental data. The lifetime of samarium doped tellurite glasses increases with increasing concentration of tellurite.