Atomic structure and electronic structure are intimately interrelated properties of nanoclusters and nanoparticles, defining their stability, electronic, optical and chemical properties, in other words, their usability as potential components for nanoscale devices. This tutorial review attempts to describe the development in understanding the structures of bare and ligand-protected gold clusters over the past decade, based on selected density-functional-theory calculations. This review should be of interest both to newcomers in the field and to an interdisciplinary community of researchers working in synthesis, characterization and utilization of ligand-protected gold clusters.
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