Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Tubes Grow From Drops

Bismuth-catalyzed growth of tin sulfide nanotubes

Since the discovery of carbon nanotubes in the early 1990s, nanotubes and nanowires have been the focus of much scientific attention. Aside from carbon, nanotubes have since been made from various other materials.

Possible applications for these nanostructures range across many fields, including microelectronic circuits, sensors, and special light conductors and light-emitting nanotubes for displays. A research team headed by Wolfgang Tremel at the University of Mainz has now developed a new process for the production of tin sulfide nanotubes. As reported in the journal Angewandte Chemie, the researchers let the SnS2 tubes “grow” out of a drop of metal.

Metal sulfides with a lamellar structure that form inorganic nanotubes are not a new concept. They are currently in use in medical technology, for fibers with ultrahigh tensile strength, in hydrogen storage, for rechargeable batteries, in catalysis, and in nanotechnology. One fundamental problem with the fabrication of sulfidic nanotubes is the need for high temperatures to make the planar layers bend and fuse into tubes. In addition, they must be trapped as unstable intermediates. In the case of tin disulfide, this is nearly impossible, however, because the compound decomposes at a significantly lower temperature.

The Mainz researchers thus implemented a different process for the production of tin disulfide nanotubes: they first used a vapor–liquid–solid (VLS) process, a method normally used in the production of semiconducting nanowires. Bismuth metal powder is mixed with tin sulfide nanoflakes and heated in a tube furnace under an argon stream. The reaction product is deposited at the cooler end of the tube.

Nanodroplets of bismuth are formed inside the oven; these act as local points of contact for the tin. In this way, the reaction partners become concentrated within the metal droplet, which then serves as the nucleus for growth of the nanotubes. “In this process, the metal drop is obtained as a sphere at the end of the tube, and the nanotubes grow out of the sphere like a hair out of a follicle,” explains Tremel. “Catalysis by the metal droplet makes growth possible at low temperatures.”

The new method allowed the scientists to produce nanotubes made of several SnS2 layers with few defects, diameters between 30 and 40 nm, and lengths between 100 and 500 nm.

Author: Wolfgang Tremel, Universität Mainz (Germany),

Title: Bismuth-Catalyzed Growth of SnS2 Nanotubes and Their Stability

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, doi: 10.1002/anie.200900546

Wolfgang Tremel | Angewandte Chemie
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Molecular doorstop could be key to new tuberculosis drugs
20.03.2018 | Rockefeller University

nachricht Modified biomaterials self-assemble on temperature cues
20.03.2018 | Duke University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

Im Focus: Tiny implants for cells are functional in vivo

For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.

In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...

Im Focus: Locomotion control with photopigments

Researchers from Göttingen University discover additional function of opsins

Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...

Im Focus: Surveying the Arctic: Tracking down carbon particles

Researchers embark on aerial campaign over Northeast Greenland

On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...

Im Focus: Unique Insights into the Antarctic Ice Shelf System

Data collected on ocean-ice interactions in the little-researched regions of the far south

The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Physicists made crystal lattice from polaritons

20.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

20.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Thawing permafrost produces more methane than expected

20.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>