Received 21 November 2012
Rubidium ytterbium(III) tetrakis(polyphosphate), RbYb(PO3)4, was synthesized by solid-state reaction. It adopts structure type IV of the MRE(PO3)4 (M = alkali metal and RE = rare earth metal) family of compounds. The structure is composed of a three-dimensional framework made up from double spiral polyphosphate chains parallel to [10-1] and irregular [YbO8] polyhedra. There are eight PO4 tetrahedra in the repeat unit of the polyphosphate chains. The Rb+ cation is located in channels extending along  that are delimited by the three-dimensional framework. It is surrounded by 11 O atoms, defining an irregular polyhedron.
For background to applications of condensed rare earth phosphates, see: Malinowski (1989); Miyazawa et al. (1979). For the structures of other ytterbium phosphate compounds, see: Rghioui et al. (2002); Fang et al. (2008); Hong (1974); Jansen et al. (1991). For an isotypic structure, see: Zhu et al. (2009).
Data collection: APEX2 (Bruker, 2008); cell refinement: SAINT (Bruker, 2008); data reduction: SAINT; program(s) used to solve structure: SHELXS97 (Sheldrick, 2008); program(s) used to refine structure: SHELXL97 (Sheldrick, 2008); molecular graphics: SHELXTL (Sheldrick, 2008) and DIAMOND (Brandenburg, 2006); software used to prepare material for publication: publCIF (Westrip, 2010).
Supplementary data and figures for this paper are available from the IUCr electronic archives (Reference: WM2707 ).
This investigation was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 20901066), the Natural Science Foundation of Yunnan Province (No. 2012FB122), the training program for young academic and technical leaders in Yunnan Province, the training program for young teachers in Yunnan University, and the program for innovative research teams (in science and technology) of the University of Yunnan Province.
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