Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

For 2-D boron, it's all about that base

03.09.2015

Rice University theorists show flat boron form would depend on metal substrates

Rice University scientists have theoretically determined that the properties of atom-thick sheets of boron depend on where those atoms land.


Two-dimensional boron would take a different forms, depending on the substrate used in chemical vapor deposition growth, according to Rice University researchers.

Credit: Zhuzha Zhang/Rice University

Calculation of the atom-by-atom energies involved in creating a sheet of boron revealed that the metal substrate - the surface upon which two-dimensional materials are grown in a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnace - would make all the difference.

Theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson and his Rice colleagues found in previous work that CVD is probably the best way to make highly conductive 2-D boron and that gold or silver might be the best substrates.

But their new calculations show it may be possible to guide the formation of 2-D boron by tailoring boron-metal interactions. They discovered that copper, a common substrate in graphene growth, might be best to obtain flat boron, while other metals would guide the resulting material in their unique ways.

The Rice team's results appear today in the journal Angewandte Chemie.

"If you make 2-D boron on copper, you get something different than if you made it on gold or silver or nickel," said Zhuhua Zhang, a Rice postdoctoral researcher and lead author of the paper. "In fact, you'd get a different material with each of those substrates."

In chemical vapor deposition, heated gases deposit atoms on the substrate, where they ideally form a desired lattice. In graphene and boron nitride, atoms settle into flat hexagonal arrays regardless of the substrate. But boron, the researchers found, is the first known 2-D material that would vary its structure based on interactions with the substrate.

Perfectly flat boron would be a grid of triangles with occasional hexagons where atoms are missing. The researchers ran calculations on more than 300 boron-metal combinations. They found the pattern of atoms in a copper surface match up nicely with 2-D boron and the strength of their interactions would help keep the boron flat. A nickel substrate would work nearly as well, they found.

On gold and silver, they determined weak atomic interactions would allow the boron to buckle. In an extension, they theorized that naturally forming, 12-atom icosahedrons of boron would assemble into interconnected sheets on copper and nickel, if the boron supply were high enough.

One remaining downside to 2-D boron is that, unlike graphene, it will remain difficult to separate from its substrate, which is necessary for use in applications.

But that strong adhesion may have a side benefit. Further calculations suggested boron on gold or nickel may rival platinum as a catalyst for hydrogen evolution reactions in applications like fuel cells.

"In 2007 we predicted the possibility of pure boron fullerenes," Yakobson said. "Seven years later, the first one was observed in a laboratory. This time, with the enormous attention researchers are giving to 2-D materials, I'd hope some lab around the world will make 2-D boron much sooner."

###

Co-authors of the paper are graduate student Yang Yang and Rice postdoctoral researcher Guoying Gao. Yakobson is Rice's Karl F. Hasselmann Professor of Materials Science and NanoEngineering and a professor of chemistry.

The Department of Energy Office of Basic Energy Sciences supported the research.

Read the abstract at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/anie.201505425/abstract

This news release can be found online at http://news.rice.edu/2015/09/02/for-2-d-boron-its-all-about-that-base/

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews

Related Materials:

Yakobson Research Group: http://biygroup.blogs.rice.edu

Rice Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering: https://msne.rice.edu

George R. Brown School of Engineering: http://engr.rice.edu

Wiess School of Natural Sciences: http://naturalsciences.rice.edu

Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation's top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,888 undergraduates and 2,610 graduate students, Rice's undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for best quality of life and for lots of race/class interaction by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger's Personal Finance.

Media Contact

David Ruth
david@rice.edu
713-348-6327

 @RiceUNews

http://news.rice.edu 

David Ruth | EurekAlert!

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously
17.01.2017 | Sonderforschungsbereich 668

nachricht Manchester scientists tie the tightest knot ever achieved
13.01.2017 | University of Manchester

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle

17.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

17.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Smart homes will “LISTEN” to your voice

17.01.2017 | Architecture and Construction

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>