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6.11D: Structure - Antifluorite

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  • Antifluorite is a mineral with a crystal structure identical with that of fluorite but with the positions of the cations and anions reversed (Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\)).

    Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\): Unit cell of the fluorite structure, from two equivalent perspectives. In the antifluorite structure, the blue positions are taken by the anion, the red positions by the cation. (CC BY-SA 4.0; Paburr via source)

    The same crystal structure is found in numerous ionic compounds with formula AB2, such as ceria (CeO2), zirconia (cubic ZrO2), uranium dioxide (UO2). In the corresponding anti-structure, called the antifluorite structure, anions and cations are swapped, such as beryllium carbide (Be2C) or lithium oxide (Li2O), potassium sulfate (K2SO4).

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