Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Highly Conductive Germanium Nanowires Made by a Simple, One-Step Process

27.04.2015

Lithium-ion batteries could benefit from this inexpensive method.

The Science


Image courtesy of Jay Switzer

Scanning electron micrograph image of germanium nanowires electrodeposited onto an indium tin oxide electrode from aqueous solution.

For the first time, germanium nanowires have been deposited on indium tin oxide substrate by a simple, one-step process called electrodeposition.

The Impact

The germanium nanowires produced by this method have superior electronic properties compared to silicon and can be used as high-capacity anode material for lithium-ion batteries, but the nanowires were previously too expensive and difficult to produce. This process may resolve the cost issue to advance this battery technology.

Summary

Germanium is a semiconductor that has superior electronic properties compared to silicon, and is being considered as a replacement for silicon in semiconductor technology. It is also an attractive anode material for lithium-ion batteries because it has a large theoretical charge-discharge capacity compared to graphite and high lithium ion diffusivity at room temperature compared to silicon.

The large volume changes associated with charge-discharge processes require anodes be made of high-surface-area nanostructures of germanium. A lack of inexpensive and simple methods to produce germanium nanostructures has so far limited their use in battery electrode applications.

Now, researchers at the Missouri University of Science and Technology have shown for the first time that germanium nanowires can be deposited by a simple, one-step process called electrodeposition that could provide a low cost route to fabricate these anodes.

The nanowires were grown on an indium tin oxide substrate. An electrochemical reduction produces tiny indium nanoparticles on the indium tin oxide surface, which act as sites for the nucleation and crystallization of germanium nanowires.

The nanowire diameter can be controlled by the solution temperature: wires grown at room temperature have an average diameter of 35 nanometers, whereas those grown at 95°C have an average diameter of 100 nanometers. The germanium nanowires produced by this method are highly conductive, because they contain a small amount of indium impurity (~0.2 atomic percent), making them ideal for lithium-ion battery applications.

Funding

DOE Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences.

Publication

N.K. Mahenderkar, Y.C. Liu, J. A. Koza, J.A. Switzer, “Electrodeposited germanium nanowires.” ACS Nano 9, 9524–9530 (2014). [DOI: 10.1021/nn503784d]

Contact Information
Kristin Manke
kristin.manke@science.doe.gov

Kristin Manke | newswise

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air
26.04.2017 | University of Central Florida

nachricht Researchers invent process to make sustainable rubber, plastics
25.04.2017 | University of Delaware

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Millions through license revenues

27.04.2017 | Health and Medicine

The TU Ilmenau develops tomorrow’s chip technology today

27.04.2017 | Information Technology

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>