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ISSN 1005-0302
CN 21-1315/TG
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      28 July 2008, Volume 24 Issue 04 Previous Issue    Next Issue
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    Research Articles
    Structural and Optical Properties and Emerging Applications of Metal Nanomaterials
    Tammy Y.Olson, Jin Z.Zhang
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 433-446. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (3737KB)
    Nanomaterials possess intriguing optical properties that depend sensitively on size, shape, and material content of the structures. Controlling such structural characteristics of the nanostructures allows the tailoring of their physical and chemical properties, e.g. optical, electronic, and catalytic, to achieve what is desired for specific applications of interest. This review will cover the development of various shapes for silver and gold nanomaterials with emphasis on their relation to optical properties. Examples of various modern synthetic methods and characterization techniques are highlighted. The influence of the metal nanomaterial′s shape and optical absorption on surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) and a final note on new emerging applications of metal nanostructures are also discussed.
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    Assembly and Applications of Carbon Nanotube Thin Films
    Hongwei ZHU , Bingqing WEI
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 447-456. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2591KB)
    The ultimate goal of current research on carbon nanotubes (CNTs) is to make breakthroughs that advance nanotechnological applications of bulk CNT materials. Especially, there has been growing interest in CNT thin films because of their unique and usually enhanced properties and tremendous potential as components for use in nano-electronic and nano-mechanical device applications or as structural elements in various devices. If a synthetic or a post processing method can produce high yield of nanotube thin films, these structures will provide tremendous potential for fundamental research on these devices. This review will address the synthesis, the post processing and the device applications of self-assembled nanotube thin films.
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    Synthesis, Growth Mechanism, and Applications of Zinc Oxide Nanomaterials
    Shulin JI, Changhui YE
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 457-472. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4083KB)
    This article reviews recent progresses in growth mechanism, synthesis, and applications of zinc oxide nanomaterials (mainly focusing on one-dimensional (1D) nanomaterials). In the first part of this article, we briefly introduce the importance, the synthesis methods and growth mechanisms, the properties and applications of ZnO 1D nanomaterials. In the second part of this article, the growth mechanisms of ZnO 1D nanomaterials will be discussed in detail in the framework of vapor-liquid-solid (VLS), vapor-solid (VS), and aqueous solution growth (ASG) approaches. Both qualitative and quantitative information will be provided to show how a controlled synthesis of ZnO 1D nanomaterials can be achieved. In the third part of this article, we present recent progresses in our group for the synthesis of ZnO 1D nanomaterials, and the results from other groups will only be mentioned briefly. Especially, experiment designing according to theories will be elaborated to demonstrate the concept of controlled synthesis. In the fourth part of this article, the properties and potential applications of ZnO 1D nanomaterials will be treated. Finally, a summary part will be presented in the fifth section. The future trend of research for ZnO 1D nanomaterials will be pointed out and key issues to be solved will be proposed.
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    Current Progress of Mechanical Properties of Metals with Nano-scale Twins
    Lei LU
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 473-482. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2183KB)
    Focus on face-centered cubic (fcc) metals with nano-scale twins lamellar structure, this paper presents a brief overview of the recent progress made in improving mechanical properties, including strength, ductility, work hardening, strain rate sensitivities, and in mechanistically understanding the underling deformation mechanisms. Significant developments have been achieved in nano-twinned fcc metals with a combination of high strength and considerable ductility at the same time, enhanced work hardening ability and enhanced rate sensitivity. The findings elucidate the role of interactions between dislocations and twin boundaries (TBs) and their contribution to the origin of outstanding properties. The computer simulation analysis accounts for high plastic anisotropy and rate sensitivity anisotropy by treating TBs as internal interfaces and allowing special slip geometry arrangements that involve soft and hard modes of deformation. Parallel to the novel mechanical behaviors of the nano-twinned materials, the investigation and developments of nanocrystalline materials are also discussed in this overview for comparing the contribution of grain boundaries/TBs and grain size/twin lamellar spacing to the properties. The recent advances in the experimental and computational studies of plastic deformation of the fcc metals with nano-scale twin lamellar structures provide insights into the possible means of optimizing comprehensive mechanical properties through interfacial engineering.
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    Friction and Wear Behaviors of Nanostructured Metals
    Zhong HAN, Yusheng ZHANG, Ke LU
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 483-494. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (5174KB)
    Nanostructured (ns) materials, i.e., polycrystalline materials with grain sizes in the nanometer regime (typically below 100 nm), have drawn considerable attention in the past decades due to their unique properties such as high strength and hardness. Wear resistance of ns materials, one of the most important properties for engineering materials, has been extensively investigated in the past decades. Obvious differences have been identified in friction and wear behaviors between the ns materials and their corresponding coarse-grained (cg) counterparts, consistently correlating with their unique structure characteristics and mechanical properties. On the other hand, the superior tribological properties of ns materials illustrate their potential applications under contact loads. The present overview will summarize the important progresses achieved on friction and wear behaviors of ns metallic materials, including ultrafine-grained (ufg) materials in recent years. Tribological properties and effects on friction and wear behaviors of ns materials will be discussed under different wear conditions including abrasive wear, sliding wear, and fretting wear. Their correlations with mechanical properties will be analyzed. Perspectives on development of this field will be highlighted as well.
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    ZnO@Porous Media, Their PL and Laser Effect
    C.Bouvy, B.L.Su
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 495-511. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (7928KB)

    Optoelectronic nanocomposites are a new class of materials, which exhibit very interesting and particular properties and attract a growing attention due to their potential applications in information storage and optoelectronic devices. Zinc oxide, ZnO, is one of the most interesting binary semiconductor (3.37 eV) with very important optical properties, which can be used in the fields such as short wavelength lasers, blue light emitting diodes, UV detectors, gas sensors, etc. This paper reviews the very recent progress in the preparation of silica-based ZnO nanocomposites. After an introduction reviewing the theoretical background, the article will begin with a survey of the optical properties and the quantum size effect (QSE) of ZnO/SiO2 nanocomposites prepared by the inclusion of ZnO nanoclusters inside silica mesoporous materials. The second part will focus on one of the most interesting properties of ZnO/SiO2 nanocomposites, which is the random lasing effect after one- and two-photon excitation. The final part will deal with the introduction of ZnO nanoparticles inside microporous zeolites and the observation of QSE. For comparison, the photoluminescence (PL) and QSE properties of ZnS nanoparticles occluded in mesoporous media are also described. New potential applications will be discussed since short-wavelength devices are required by industry to design, for instance, new information storage supports and biolabelling devices.

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    Recent Progress in One-dimensional ZnS Nanostructures:Syntheses and Novel Properties
    Xiaosheng FANG, Yoshio B, O, Dmitri GOLBERG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 512-519. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2594KB)
    In this review, the progress made during the last two years with respect to the syntheses and novel properties of one-dimensional (1D) ZnS nanostructures is presented. Primarily the research on 1D ZnS nanostructures has been of growing interest owing to their promising applications in nanoscale optoelectronic devices. Diverse 1D ZnS nanostructures with delicately-tuned morphologies, sizes, and microstructures have been synthesized through relatively simple and well-controlled techniques. Some novel properties of the nanomaterials have been explored and the relationships between their structural features and functions have been understood gradually.
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    One-dimensional ZnS-based Hetero-, Core/shell and Hierarchical Nanostructures
    Xiaosheng FANG, Ujjal K.Gautamy, Yoshio B, O, Dmitri GOLBERG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 520-528. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2155KB)
    A focus of the current nanotechnology has shifted from routine fabrication of nanostructures to designing functional electronic devices and realizing their immense potentials for applications. Due to infusion of multifunctionality into a single system, the utilization of hetero-, core/shell and hierarchical nanostructures has become the key issue for building such devices. ZnS, due to its direct wide bandgap, high index of refraction, high transparency in the visible range and intrinsic polarity, is one of the most useful semiconductors for a wide range of electronics applications. This article provides a dense review of the state-of-the-art research activities in one-dimensional (1D) ZnS-based hetero-, core/shell and hierarchical nanostructures. The particular emphasis is put on their syntheses and applications.
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    Solution-phase Synthesis of One-dimensional Semiconductor Nanostructures
    Jianfeng YE, Limin QI
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 529-540. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4401KB)
    The synthesis of one-dimensional (1D) semiconductor nanostructures has been studied intensively for a wide range of materials due to their unique structural and physical properties and promising potential for future technological applications. Among various strategies for synthesizing 1D semiconductor nanostructures, solution-phase synthetic routes are advantageous in terms of cost, throughput, modulation of composition, and the potential for large-scale and environmentally benign production. This article gives a concise review on the recent developments in the solution-phase synthesis of 1D semiconductor nanostructures of different compositions, sizes, shapes, and architectures. We first introduce several typical solution-phase synthetic routes based on controlled precipitation from homogeneous solutions, including hydrothermal/solvothermal process, solution-liquid-solid (SLS) process, high-temperature organic-solution process, and low-temperature aqueous-solution process. Subsequently, we discuss two solution-phase synthetic strategies involving solid templates or substrates, such as the chemical transformation of 1D sacrificial templates and the oriented growth of 1D nanostructure arrays on solid substrates. Finally, prospects of the solution-phase approaches to 1D semiconductor nanostructures will be briefly discussed.
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    One-Dimensional (1-D) Nanoscale Heterostructures
    Guozhen SHEN, Di CHEN, Yoshio B, O, Dmitri GOLBERG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 541-549. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2203KB)
    One-dimensional (1-D) nanostructures have been attracted much attention as a result of their exceptional properties, which are different from bulk materials. Among 1-D nanostructures, 1-D heterostructures with modulated compositions and interfaces have recently become of particular interest with respect to potential applications in nanoscale building blocks of future optoelectronic devices and systems. Many kinds of methods have been developed for the synthesis of 1-D nanoscale heterostructures. This article reviews the most recent development, with an emphasize on our own recent efforts, on 1-D nanoscale heterostructures, especially those synthesized from the vapor deposition methods, in which all the reactive precursors are mixed together in the reaction chamber. Three types of 1-D nanoscale heterostructures, defined from their morphologies characteristics, are discussed in detail, which include 1-D co-axial core-shell heterostructures, 1-D segmented heterostructures and hierarchical heterostructures. This article begins with a brief survey of various methods that have been developed for synthesizing 1-D nanoscale heterostructures and then mainly focuses on the synthesis, structures and properties of the above three types of nanoscale heterostructures. Finally, this review concludes with personal views towards the topic of 1-D nanoscale heterostructures.
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    Nanotube Arrays in Porous Anodic Alumina Membranes
    Liang LI, Naoto KOSHIZAKI, Guanghai LI
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 550-562. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4916KB)
    This review summarizes the various techniques developed for fabricating nanotube arrays in porous anodic alumina membranes (AAMs). After a brief introduction to the fabrication process of AAMs, taking carbons, metals, semiconductors, organics, biomoleculars, and heterojunctions as typical examples, attention will be focused on the recently established methods to fabricate nanotubes in AAM, including electrochemical deposition, surface sol-gel, modified chemical vapor deposition, atomic layer deposition, and layer-by-layer growth. Every method is demonstrated by one or two reported results. Finally, this review is concluded with some perspectives on the research directions and focuses on the AAM-based nanotubes fields.
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    Small Molecule Organic Nanostructures—Fabrication and Properties
    A.B.Djuri&#, i&#, A.M.C.Ng, Kai-Yin CHEUNG, Man-Kin FUNG, Wai-Kin CHAN
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 563-568. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4257KB)
    Organic materials are of great interest for the development of low cost electronic and optoelectronic devices. Although majority of research on organic materials is concerned with synthesis of novel compounds and organic thin films, organic nanostructures are attracting increasing interest in recent years. We briefly review different growth methods of organic nanostructures, which can be roughly divided into vapor deposition methods and self-assembly techniques in solution. Then we highlight some interesting properties of organic nanostructures, as well as possible applications, including field emission, electronic and optoelectronic devices.
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    Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes for Flexible Electronics and Sensors
    Xiuyun SUN, Yugang SUN
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 569-577. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (3014KB)
    This article reviews the use of electronic quality single-walled carbon nanotubes grown via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) approaches at high temperatures as building blocks for fabricating flexible field-effect devices, such as thin-film transistors (TFTs) and chemical sensors. Dry transfer printing technique is developed for forming films of CVD nanotubes on low-temperature plastic substrates. Examples of TFTs with the use of nanotubes and thin dielectrics and hydrogen sensors with the use of nanotubes decorated with palladium nanoparticles are discussed in detail to demonstrate the promising potentiality of single-walled carbon nanotubes for building high performance flexible devices, which can find applications where traditional devices on rigid substrates are not suitable.
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    Nanotube-Based Chemical and Biomolecular Sensors
    J.Koh, B.Kim, S.Hong, H.Choi, H.Im
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 578-588. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4285KB)
    We present a brief review about recent results regarding carbon nanotube (CNT)-based chemical and biomole-cular sensors. For the fabrication of CNT-based sensors, devices containing CNT channels between two metal electrodes are first fabricated usually via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) or “surface programmed assembly” method. Then, the CNT surfaces are often functionalized to enhance the selectivity of the sensors. Using this process, highly-sensitive CNT-based sensors can be fabricated for the selective detection of various chemical and biological molecules such as hydrogen, ammonia, carbon monoxide, chlorine gas, DNA, glucose, alcohol, and proteins.
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    Manipulation of Crawling Growth for the Formation of Sub-millimeter Long ZnO Nanowalls
    H.J.FAN, M.Zacharias
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 589-593. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2150KB)
    Vapor-phase growth of ZnO nanowires based on gold catalyst is usually accompanied with lateral crawling growth on the substrate surface. We present results from our systematic experiments where the growth temperature and catalyst size are controlled. The data corroborate that it is possible to obtain clean vertical nanowire arrays while avoiding the crawling growth. On the other hand, crawling growth can be manipulated to obtain root-interconnected nanowire arrays, which could be useful for certain applications. Our results also imply that the previously suggested growth mechanism for the wire-on-wall hybridstructure might be incorrect. Finally, we show the formation of sub-millimeter long, straight ZnO nanowalls by combining a gold-catalyzed epitaxial growth of vertical nanowires and their mergence due to a confined crawling growth. These unconventional nanostructures might have unique electric or optical transport properties.
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    Thermal Stability of Fe2O3 Nanowires
    Xiongjian ZHANG, Qin HAN, Zhao DONG, Yingying XU, Han ZHANG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 594-596. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (764KB)
    The thermal stability of α-Fe2O3 and γ-Fe2O3 nanowires was studied by post annealing the samples at different temperatures. Before and after annealing, the samples were characterized by X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. The α-Fe2O3 nanowires are stable at the temperatures up to 600℃, and the crystalline structure becomes more perfect after annealing. This behavior supplies a way to improve the quality of the α-Fe2O3 nanowires. The γ-Fe2O3 nanowires become unstable when annealed at 350℃. Raman spectra of both nanowires have been measured, which also indicate that the γ-Fe2O3 nanowires are transformed into α-Fe2O3 under the strong laser beam.
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    Metal Oxide Nanostructures from Simple Metal-oxygen Reaction in Air
    Ting YU, Zexaing SHEN
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 597-602. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (1574KB)
    Metal oxide nanostructures (CuO, Co3O4, ZnO and α-Fe2O3) have been successfully fabricated by a simple and efficient method: heating the appropriate metals in air at low temperatures ranging from 200 to 400℃. The chemical composition, morphology and crystallinity of the nanostructures have been characterized by micro-Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. Two mechanisms: vapor-solid and surface diffusion play dominant roles in the growth of metal oxide nanostructures starting with low melting point metals (Zn and Cu) and high melting point metals (Fe and Co), respectively. With sharp ends and large aspect ratio, the metal oxide nanostructures exhibit impressive field-induced electron emission properties, indicating their potentials as future electron source and displays. The water wettability and anti-wettability properties of iron oxide nanoflakes were also discussed in this work.
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    A Novel Process for High-efficient Synthesis of One-dimensional Carbon Nanomaterials from Flames
    Xiang QI, Jun ZHANG, Chunxu PAN
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 603-607. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2387KB)
    The substrate pre-treatment plays a key role in obtaining hollow-cored carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and solidcored carbon nanofibers (CNFs) from flames. This paper introduces a simply and high-efficient process by coating a NiSO4 or FeSO4 layer on the substrate as catalyst precursors. Comparing with the regular pretreatment methods, the present experiments showed that the coating pre-treatment provided the following advantages: 1) greatly shortening the synthesis time; 2) available variant substrates and carbon sources; 3) narrowing the diameters distribution. The sulfate is considered to be a crucial factor at the growth of CNTs and CNFs, because it increases the surface energy of catalyst particles and the surface specificity of sulfurs action in metallic grains. This novel process provides a possibility for high quality and mass production of CNTs and CNFs from flames.
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    Morphology-Controlled Growth of AlN One-Dimensional Nanostructures
    Ting XIE, Min YE, Xiaosheng FANG, Zhi JIANG, Li CHEN, Mingguang KONG, Yucheng WU, Lide ZHANG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 608-614. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (1708KB)
    Aluminum nitride (AlN) nanowires, serrated nanoribbons, and nanoribbons were selectively obtained through a simple chloride assisted chemical vapor deposition process. The morphologies of the products could be controlled by adjusting the deposition position and the flux of the reactant gas. The morphologies and structures of the AlN products were investigated in detail. The formation mechanism of the as-prepared different morphologies of AlN one-dimensional (1D) nanostructures was discussed on the basis of the experimental results.
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    Growth Kinetics of Nanocrystals and Nanorods by Employing Small-angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) and Other Techniques
    Kanishka BISWAS, Neenu VARGHESE, C.N.R.Rao
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 615-627. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (6322KB)
    In this article, we report the results of our detailed investigations of the growth kinetics of zero-dimensional nanocrystals as well as one-dimensional nanorods by the combined use of small angel X-ray scattering (SAXS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) along with other physical techniques. The study includes growth kinetics of gold nanocrystals formed by the reduction of HAuCl4 by tetrakis(hydroxymethyl) phosphonium chloride in aqueous solution, of CdSe nanocrystals formed by the reaction of cadmium stearate and selenium under solvothermal conditions, and of ZnO nanorods formed by the reaction of zinc acetate with sodium hydroxide under solvothermal conditions in the absence and presence of capping agents. The growth of gold nanocrystals does not follow the diffusion-limited Ostwald ripening, and instead follows a Sigmoidal rate curve. The heat change associated with the growth determined by isothermal titration calorimetry is about 10 kcal•mol-1 per 1 nm increase in the diameter of the nanocrystals. In the case of CdSe nanocrystals also, the growth mechanism deviates from diffusion-limited growth and follows a combined model containing both diffusion and surface reaction terms. Our study of the growth kinetics of uncapped and poly(vinyl pyrollidone) (PVP)-capped ZnO nanorods has yielded interesting insights. We observe small nanocrystals next to the ZnO nanorods after a lapse of time in addition to periodic focusing and defocusing of the width of the length distribution. These observations lend support to the diffusion-limited growth model for the growth of uncapped ZnO nanorods. Accordingly, the time dependence on the length of uncapped nanorods follows the L3 law as required for diffusion-limited Ostwald ripening. The PVP-capped nanorods, however, show a time dependence, which is best described by a combination of diffusion (L3) and surface reaction (L2) terms.
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    Synthesis, Characterization and Electromagnetic Studies on Nanocrystalline Co0.5Zn0.5Fe2O4 Synthesized by Polyacrylamide Gel
    Ruiting MA, Yanwen TIAN, Haitao ZHAO, Gang ZHANG, Hui ZHAO
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 628-632. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (505KB)
    Nanocrystalline Co0.5Zn0.5Fe2O4 ferrite was synthesized by polyacrylamide gel method. The electromagnetic and microwave absorption properties of the ferrite were investigated. The results indicated that calcining temperature of the ferrite had a significant influence on the effective properties of the ferrite. When the calcining temperature was 500, 600 and 700℃, the average size of particles was 10, 30 and 80 nm, respectively. The dielectric loss (ε") and magnetic loss (u") of the ferrite was around 0.65 and 0.29 at 8.2 GHz, respectively. Microwave absorption properties of the ferrites were simultaneously influenced due to the strong correlation between reflection loss and electromagnetic parameters of the ferrite.
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    Synthesis and Luminescent Properties of Planar-tip and Tapered-tip ZnO Nanorod Arrays
    Chun-wen WANG, Jr-hau HE, Lih-juann CHEN
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 633-636. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (746KB)
    Vertically aligned ZnO nanorods were synthesized on a-plane sapphire via a metal catalyzed vapor phase transport and condensation process in a two-zone vacuum furnace. Planar-tip and tapered-tip ZnO nanorods were successfully synthesized by utilizing different source materials under the same growth conditions. The growth mechanisms were proposed to be vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) process for planar-tip ZnO nanorods and a combination of VLS and self-catalyzed processes for tapered-tip ZnO nanorods. From cathodoluminescence (CL) measurements, tapered-tip ZnO nanorods have more intense green emission than planar-tip ZnO nanorods, and therefore possess higher oxygen vacancy concentration than planar-tip ZnO nanorods. From CL characteristics, well-aligned planar-tip ZnO nanorods shall serve effectively as laser source, while well-aligned tapered-tip ZnO nanorods are suitable for direction-related optical applications.
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    Solvothermal Synthesis of Boehmite and γ-Alumina Nanorods
    Mingguo MA, Yingjie ZHU, Guofeng CHENG, Yuehong HUANG
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 637-640. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (977KB)
    Boehmite nanorods were synthesized by a solvothermal method using AlCl3•6H2O in mixed solvents of water and aniline. The solvothermal time, heating temperature and the concentration of aniline have effects on the morphology of boehmite. γ-alumina nanorods were prepared by a simple thermal transformation of boehmite nanorods. A rational mechanism based on the oriented attachment is proposed for the formation of boehmite nanorods. The products were characterized by X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Photoluminescence (PL) spectrum of the boehmite nanorods was also investigated.
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    Solution-based Chemical Strategies to Purposely Control the Microstructure of Functional Materials
    Fei LIU, Congting SUN, Chenglin YAN, Dongfeng XUE
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 641-648. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2769KB)
    Micro/nanostructured crystals with controlled architectures are desirable for many applications in optics, electronics, biology, medicine, and energy conversions. Low-temperature, aqueous chemical routes have been widely investigated for the synthesis of particles, and arrays of oriented nanorods and nanotubes. In this paper, based on the ideal crystal shapes predicted by the chemical bonding theory, we have developed some potential chemical strategies to tune the microstructure of functional materials, ZnS and Nb2O5 nanotube arrays, MgO wiskers and nestlike spheres, and cubic phase Cu2O microcrystals were synthesized here to elucidate these strategies. We describe their controlled crystallization processes and illustrate the detailed key factors controlling their growth by examining various reaction parameters. Current results demonstrate that our designed chemical strategies for tuning microstructure of functional materials are applicable to several technologically important materials, and therefore may be used as a versatile and effective route to the controllable synthesis of other inorganic functional materials.
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    Zinc oxide nanostructured biosensor for glucose detection
    X.W.Sun, J.X.Wang, A.Wei
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 649-656. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (2266KB)
    Zinc oxide (ZnO) nanocombs were fabricated by vapor phase transport, and nanorods and hierarchical nanodisk structures by aqueous thermal decomposition. Glucose biosensors were constructed using these ZnO nanostructures as supporting materials for glucose oxidase (GOX) loading. These ZnO glucose biosensors showed a high sensitivity for glucose detection and high affinity of GOX to glucose as well as the low detection limit. The results demonstrate that ZnO nanostructures have potential applications in biosensors.
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    Mesoporous Carbon-Tin Nanocomposites as Anode Materials for Li-ion Battery
    Z.W.Zhao, Z.P.Guo, P.Yao, H.K.Liu
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 657-660. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (983KB)
    A new mesoporous carbon-tin (MC-Sn) nanocomposite has been successfully prepared via a two-step method. From the transmission electron microscopy (TEM) observations, the tin nanoparticles were decorated on the as-prepared mesoporous carbons. The mesoprous structure of the carbon can effectively buffer the volume changes during the Li-Sn alloying and de-alloying cycles. The as-prepared MC/Sn nanocomposite electrodes exhibited extremely good cycling stability, with the specific capacity of Sn in the composite electrode calculated to be 959.7 mAh•g-1, which amounts to an impressive 96.9% of the theoretical value (990 mAh•g-1). The reversible capacity after 200 cycles is 96.1% of the first cycle reversible capacity, i.e., the capacity fade rate is only 0.0195% per cycle, which is even better than that of commercial graphite-based anodes.
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    Broad Microwave Dielectric Property of Single-walled Carbon Nanotube Composites
    JunhHua WU
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 661-666. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (4055KB)
    Microwave dielectric measurements over the broad bandwith of 10 MHz to 20 GHz were conducted on composites comprising bundles of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) embedded in an epoxy matrix, in comparison to the nano-graphite and MWNT. It is found that both relative real and imaginary permittivity of the nanocomposites are strong functions of the SWNT concentration, showing large, wide dielectric and electrical response. Distinct resonance around 1.5 GHz is observed at high SWNT concentrations, accompanied by the downshift of the resonance frequency with increasing concentration. Largely, the SWNT-epoxy composites share the behavior of the MWNT owing to structural similarity, much more effective than the nano-graphite. The remarkable, broadband dielectric and electrical properties of the nanotubes acquired in the work originate from their unique seamless graphene architectures, modeled by two major contributions, dielectric relaxation/resonance and electronic conduction, which is substantiated by the agreement between theoretical analysis and experimental results. The carbon nanotube composites are prospective for microwave applications and offer experimental evidence for fundamental studies in low-dimensional systems.
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    Porous Cube-like In2O3 Nanoparticles and Their Sensing Characteristics toward Ethanol
    Chih-Chia HUANG, Chen-Sheng YEH
    J. Mater. Sci. Technol., 2008, 24 (04): 667-674. 
    Abstract   HTML   PDF (3594KB)
    Porous cube-like crystalline In2O3 nanoparticles with an average diagonal length of 34.8 nm were fabricated by a laser ablation-reflux process to form In(OH)3, followed by a calcination treatment to yield porous In2O3. HRTEM (high-resolution transmission electronic microscopy), XRD (X-ray diffraction), BET (Brunauer-Emmett-Teller), and XPS (X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy) analysis were used to characterize their crystalline structures, grain sizes, surface areas, and surface compositions. The as-prepared porous indium oxides were tested for their sensing properties toward ethanol. Non-porous In2O3 nanopowder (about 40 nm) was also examined in order to compare the results with the as-prepared porous In2O3 nanomaterials. The porous In2O3 exhibited much better performance than that of non-porosus In2O3, and showed enhanced sensitivity with a lower detection limit than other reported In2O3-based materials when exposed to ethanol. Good gas sensitivity and linear behavior as a function of ethanol concentration were observed in the porous In2O3 nanoparticles.
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