Carbon clusters near the crossover to fullerene stability

  title={Carbon clusters near the crossover to fullerene stability},
  author={Paul R. C. Kent and Michael D. Towler and Richard J. Needs and Gunaretnam Rajagopal},
  journal={Physical Review B},
The energetic stability of structural isomers of ${\mathrm{C}}_{24},$ ${\mathrm{C}}_{26},$ ${\mathrm{C}}_{28},$ and ${\mathrm{C}}_{32}$ clusters, including fullerenes, is studied using diffusion quantum Monte Carlo methods. We predict that a ${\mathrm{C}}_{24}$ isomer is the smallest stable graphitic fragment and that the smallest stable fullerenes are the ${\mathrm{C}}_{26}$ and ${\mathrm{C}}_{28}$ clusters with ${C}_{2v}$ and ${T}_{d}$ symmetry, respectively. Given suitable experimental… 

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