Physicists Create a New Form of Hydrogen (Download PDF)

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Physicists from Austria have created new form of Hydrogen. I. e. negatively charged hydrogen clusters. Scientists also determined geometric structures of clusters. This is first time scientists have seen negative hydrogen cluster ions beyond simplest possible pairing one with one.

Negatively charged hydrogen clusters existed

Negatively Charged Hydrogen Clusters Existed

Negatively charged hydrogen clusters existed


  • Involved Physicists: Michael Renzler of University of Innsbruck in Austria.
  • Significance of Research: It will help researchers to easily identify clusters in nature.
  • Researchers first injected cold liquid helium droplets with hydrogen molecules to form clusters with a neutral charge.
  • Then they exposed these hydrogen-infused droplets to an electron beam.
  • This caused some hydrogen molecules to ionize and be flung out into surrounding vacuum as negatively charged hydrogen ions.
  • Nearby hydrogen molecules soon started clustering around negatively charged ions to create negatively charged hydrogen clusters that could boast a few, or many molecules each.
  • Newly created negatively charged hydrogen clusters existed only for microseconds (1 microsecond = 0.000001 seconds).
  • It was enough time for researchers to determine their geometric structures.
  • It is suspected for years that large hydrogen clusters could form naturally in outer space.

About hydrogen ion clusters

Image of Hydrogen ion

Image of Hydrogen Ion

Image of Hydrogen ion

  • To understand negatively charged hydrogen clusters, one first needs to understand their counterparts.
  • Clusters of a few or many hydrogen molecules are known simply as hydrogen ion clusters.
  • They form at very low temperatures and can contain as many as 100 individual atoms.

- Published/Last Modified on: March 16, 2017

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