With the ongoing efforts on synthesizing mononuclear single-ion magnets (SIMs) with promising applications in high-density data storage and spintronics devices, the linear or quasi-linear Fe(I) complexes emerge as the enticing candidates possessing large unquenched angular momentum. Herein, we have studied five experimentally synthesized linear Fe(I) complexes to uncover the origin of single-molecule magnetic behavior of these complexes. To begin with, we benchmarked the methodology on the experimentally and theoretically well-studied complex [Fe(C(SiMe3)3)2]−1(1) (SiMe3 = trimethylsilyl), which is characterized with a large spin-reversal barrier of 226 cm–1. Subsequently, the spin-phonon coupling coefficients are calculated for the low-frequency vibrational modes to understand the relaxation mechanism of the complex. Furthermore, the two Fe(I) complexes, that is, [Fe(cyIDep)2]+1(2) (cyIDep = 1,3-bis(2′,6′-diethylphenyl)-4,5-(CH2)4-imidazole-2-ylidene) and [Fe(sIDep)2]+1(3) (sIDep = 1,3-bis(2′,6′-diethylphenyl)-imidazolin-2-ylidene), are studied that are experimentally reported with no SIM behavior under ac or dc magnetic fields; however, they exhibit large opposite axial zero field splitting (−62.4 and +34.0 cm–1, respectively) from ab initio calculations. We have unwrapped the origin of this contrasting observation between experiment and theory by probing their magnetic relaxation pathways and the pattern of d orbital splitting. Additionally, the two experimentally synthesized Fe(I) complexes, that is, [(η6-C6H6)FeAr*-3,5-Pr2i(4) (Ar*-3,5-Pr2i = C6H-2,6-(C6H2-2,4,6-Pr3i)2-3,5-Pr2i) and [(CAAC)2Fe]+1(5) (CAAC = cyclic (alkyl) (amino)carbene), are investigated for SIM behavior, since there is no report on their magnetic anisotropy. To this end, complex 4 presents itself as the possible candidate for SIM.

We are working at the Institute of Nano Science and Technology Mohali, one of the leading research institutes in India in the field of Nano Science. INST is located in Chandigarh, one of the major cities of India.

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