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The crystal structure of MgCu2. Magnesium is shown in green, copper in brown.
IUPAC name
Copper - magnesium (2:1)
Other names
3D model (JSmol)
  • InChI=1S/2Cu.Mg
  • [Mg].[Cu].[Cu]
Molar mass 151.397 g·mol−1
Melting point 520 °C[1]
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).

MgCu2 is a binary intermetallic compound of magnesium (Mg) and copper (Cu) adopting cubic crystal structure, more specifically the C15 Laves phase. The space group of MgCu2 is Fd3m with lattice parameter a = 7.04 Å.[2]


MgCu2 can be prepared by hydrogenation of Mg2Cu or the reaction of magnesium hydride and metallic copper at elevated temperature and pressure:[3]

2 Mg2Cu + 3 H2 → 3 MgH2 + MgCu2
MgH2 + 2 Cu → MgCu2 + H2

MgCu2 can also be prepared by reacting of stoichiometric amounts of metals at about 380 °C in the presence of excess copper.[4]


MgCu2 can react with boron or its oxide to form magnesium borides.[5] It can also react with magnesium hydride to produce orthorhombic Mg2Cu, liberating hydrogen.[6]


  1. ^ Chen, W.; Sun, J. (2006). "The electronic structure and mechanical properties of MgCu2 Laves phase compound". Physica B: Condensed Matter. 382 (1–2): 279–284. Bibcode:2006PhyB..382..279C. doi:10.1016/j.physb.2006.02.031. ISSN 0921-4526.
  2. ^ Ganeshan, S.; Shang, S.L.; Zhang, H.; Wang, Y.; Mantina, M.; Liu, Z.K. (2009). "Elastic constants of binary Mg compounds from first-principles calculations". Intermetallics. 17 (5): 313–318. doi:10.1016/j.intermet.2008.11.005. ISSN 0966-9795.
  3. ^ Shibata, Kazuya; Tanaka, Koji; Kurumatani, Kosuke; Nishida, Yasuki; Takeshita, Hiroyuki T. (2013). "Thermodynamic Evaluation for Formation of MgCu2from MgH2and Cu". Thermodynamic Evaluation for Formation of MgCu2 from MgH2 and Cu. pp. 221–226. doi:10.1002/9781118792148.ch28. ISBN 9781118792148.
  4. ^ Arcot, Binny; Cabral, C.; Harper, J. M. E.; Murarka, S. P. (2011). "Intermetallic Reactions Between Copper and Magnesium as an Adhesion / Barrier Layer". MRS Proceedings. 225. doi:10.1557/PROC-225-231. ISSN 0272-9172.
  5. ^ Birol, Yucel (2013). "Response to Thermal Exposure of Ball-Milled Cu-Mg/B2O3 Powder Blends". Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B. 44 (4): 969–973. Bibcode:2013MMTB...44..969B. doi:10.1007/s11663-013-9860-6. ISSN 1073-5615. S2CID 136588797.
  6. ^ Volkova, L. S.; Kalinnikov, G. V.; Ivanov, A. V.; Shilkin, S. P. (2012). "Synthesis of Mg2Cu and MgCu2 nanoparticles in a KCl-NaCl-MgCl2 melt". Inorganic Materials. 48 (11): 1078–1081. doi:10.1134/S0020168512110179. ISSN 0020-1685. S2CID 96203397.

See also[edit]