Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

SU Chemists Develop ‘Fresh, New’ Approach to Making Alloy Nanomaterials

12.08.2013
Potential applications include gas storage, heterogeneous catalysis and lithium-ion batteries

Chemists in The College of Arts and Sciences have figured out how to synthesize nanomaterials with stainless steel-like interfaces. Their discovery may change how the form and structure of nanomaterials are manipulated, particularly those used for gas storage, heterogeneous catalysis and lithium-ion batteries.

The findings are the subject of a July 24 article in the journal Small (Wiley-VCH, 2013), co-authored by associate professor Mathew M. Maye and research assistant Wenjie Wu G’11, G’13.

Until now, scientists have used many wet-chemical approaches—collectively known as colloidal synthesis—to manipulate reactions in which metallic ions form alloys at the nanoscale. Here, metal nanoparticles are typically 2 to 50 nanometers in size and have highly unique properties, including various colors, high reactivity and novel chemistry.

Maye and Wu are part of a growing team of international chemists and materials scientists devising new ways to alter the size, shape and composition of nanoparticles.

“At SU, we have developed a new synthetic pathway to tailor the internal microstructure of nanomaterials,” says Maye, whose research spans inorganic chemistry, catalysis, materials science, self-assembly and biotechnology.

Maye’s approach begins with a pre-synthesized iron nanoparticle core. After synthesizing the core in its crystalline metallic form, he and Wu chemically deposit thin shells of chromium onto the iron. When the "core/shell" nanoparticles are exposed to high temperatures, they anneal. Moreover, the iron and chromium diffuse into one another, forming an iron-chromium alloy shell. Thus, the "core/alloy" product has an interface similar to some forms of stainless steel.

Since stainless steel is known for its resistance to oxidation, the big challenge for Maye and Wu has been finding out how nanoparticles cope during this process.

“We’ve discovered that nanoparticles exhibit a unique behavior when oxidized,” he says. “A thin, iron-chromium oxide shell forms, leaving behind an unoxidized iron core. Even more interesting is the fact that a void forms, separating the core from the shell. This phenomenon is known in materials science as Kirkendall Diffusion, or Vacancy Coalescence."

This kind of work, he adds, wouldn't be possible without high-resolution electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and magnetic measurements.

Although “core/alloy” fabrication is a new approach, it may allow for more diverse forms of alloy nanomaterials.

“Most alloys we take for granted at the macroscale, such as steel, are hard to fabricate at the nanoscale, because of ease of oxidation and other specific conditions that are required," says Maye. "Our approach may open new doors."

A recipient of many honors and awards, including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, Maye joined SU's faculty in 2008.

Wu, whose expertise encompasses nanomaterials synthesis, was the lead graduate student on the project. In August, she earns a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from SU.

Maye’s work is supported by the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund. It has made use of the Cornell Center for Materials Research, which is part of the National Science Foundation’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers, as well as the Binghamton University Analytical and Diagnostics Laboratory and the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry Microscopy Facility.

Rob Enslin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.syr.edu

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern
20.07.2018 | Princeton University

nachricht Relax, just break it
20.07.2018 | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>