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1.
Nat Protoc ; 2020 Sep 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32887974

RESUMO

The encapsulation of subnanometric metal entities (isolated metal atoms and metal clusters with a few atoms) in porous materials such as zeolites can be an effective strategy for the stabilization of those metal species and therefore can be further used for a variety of catalytic reactions. However, owing to the complexity of zeolite structures and their low stability under the electron beam, it is challenging to obtain atomic-level structural information of the subnanometric metal species encapsulated in zeolite crystallites. In this protocol, we show the application of a scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) technique that records simultaneously the high-angle annular dark-field (HAADF) images and integrated differential phase-contrast (iDPC) images for structural characterization of subnanometric Pt and Sn species within MFI zeolite. The approach relies on the use of a computational model to simulate results obtained under different conditions where the metals are present in different positions within the zeolite. This imaging technique allows to obtain simultaneously the spatial information of heavy elements (Pt and Sn in this work) and the zeolite framework structure, enabling direct determination of the location of the subnanometric metal species. Moreover, we also present the combination of other spectroscopy techniques as complementary tools for the STEM-iDPC imaging technique to obtain global understanding and insights on the spatial distributions of subnanometric metal species in zeolite structure. These structural insights can provide guidelines for the rational design of uniform metal-zeolite materials for catalytic applications.

2.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32583951

RESUMO

Preparation of supported metal catalysts with uniform particle size and coordination environment is a challenging and important topic in materials chemistry and catalysis. In this work, we report the regioselective generation of single-site Ir atoms and their evolution into stabilized subnanometric Ir clusters in MWW zeolite, which are located at the 10MR window connecting the two neighboring 12MR supercages. The size of the subnanometric Ir clusters can be controlled by the post-synthesis treatments and maintain below 1 nm even after being reduced at 650 °C, which cannot be readily achieved with samples prepared by conventional impregnation methods. The high structure sensitivity, size-dependence, of catalytic performance in the alkane hydrogenolysis reaction of Ir clusters in the subnanometric regime is evidenced.

3.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 11(45): 41925-41934, 2019 Nov 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31633337

RESUMO

Agrochemical encapsulation agents used up to now are commonly based on polymeric compounds or metal particles, but the employment of other natural products such as host structures has not been tackled in detail. In the work reported here, fully organic nanotubes composed of human bile acid (lithocholic acid) have been synthesized. These nanotubes were employed to encapsulate potential disulfide herbicide mimics that have previously shown relevant inhibitory activity against weeds. The three-dimensional chemical information from scanning transmission electron microscope analytical tomography with subnanometer scale resolution convincingly demonstrates for the first time the occurrence of efficient encapsulation within a fully organic nanotube of different organic molecules with activity as herbicides. The encapsulation was achieved in a one-pot synthesis, in an aqueous environment and under in situ conditions without using any marker or coating with contrast materials, which renders the process greener than those routinely used. The nanotubes allow complete water solubilization, with an encapsulation percentage of up to 78% in all of the herbicide compounds. Furthermore, nanotubes showed a flattened arrangement due to the host-guest interaction. The synthetic approach represents a step forward in solving the key problem of the quite limited solubility of natural agrochemicals in aqueous environments. In addition, the process presents a breakthrough in the use of natural products produced by the human body as encapsulating agents, which expands possible future applications. The preliminary docking approach clarifies that the 2o01 transmembrane transport protein seems to be the prior channel of the organic nanotube in the delivery process to vegetable cells. The etiolated wheat coleoptile bioassay demonstrated that the encapsulated herbicides have improved the bioactivity of free compounds, keeping 60% of inhibition of the weed at least for every disulfide, a requisite for their fruitful application as agrochemicals.


Assuntos
Agroquímicos/química , Herbicidas/química , Nanotubos/química , Agroquímicos/farmacologia , Composição de Medicamentos , Sistemas de Liberação de Medicamentos , Herbicidas/farmacologia , Plantas Daninhas/efeitos dos fármacos , Plantas Daninhas/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Solubilidade
4.
Nat Mater ; 18(8): 866-873, 2019 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31263227

RESUMO

Subnanometric metal species (single atoms and clusters) have been demonstrated to be unique compared with their nanoparticulate counterparts. However, the poor stabilization of subnanometric metal species towards sintering at high temperature (>500 °C) under oxidative or reductive reaction conditions limits their catalytic application. Zeolites can serve as an ideal support to stabilize subnanometric metal catalysts, but it is challenging to localize subnanometric metal species on specific sites and modulate their reactivity. We have achieved a very high preference for localization of highly stable subnanometric Pt and PtSn clusters in the sinusoidal channels of purely siliceous MFI zeolite, as revealed by atomically resolved electron microscopy combining high-angle annular dark-field and integrated differential phase contrast imaging techniques. These catalysts show very high stability, selectivity and activity for the industrially important dehydrogenation of propane to form propylene. This stabilization strategy could be extended to other crystalline porous materials.

5.
J Am Chem Soc ; 141(4): 1606-1613, 2019 01 30.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30589263

RESUMO

Ferritin, a soluble and highly robust protein with subunits packed into well-defined helices, is a key component of the iron regulatory system in the brain and thus is widely recognized as a crucial protein for iron metabolism, but may also bear possible implications in some neurodegenerative disorders. Here, we present evidence of how human recombinant apoferritin can convert into an unusual structure from its folded native state; that is, amyloid fibrils analogue to those found in pathological disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. An extensive combination of advanced microscopy, spectroscopy and scattering techniques concur to reveal that apoferritin fibrils possess a common double stranded twisted ribbon structure which can result in a mesoscopic right-handed chirality. We highlight a direct connection between the chirality and morphology of the resulting amyloid fibrils, and the initial protein subunits composition, advancing our understanding on the possible role of misfolding in some ferritin-related pathologies and posing new bases for the design of chiral 1D functional nanostructures.

6.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 57(52): 17094-17099, 2018 Dec 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30398300

RESUMO

The synthesis and reactivity of single metal atoms in a low-valence state bound to just water, rather than to organic ligands or surfaces, is a major experimental challenge. Herein, we show a gram-scale wet synthesis of Pt1 1+ stabilized in a confined space by a crystallographically well-defined first water sphere, and with a second coordination sphere linked to a metal-organic framework (MOF) through electrostatic and H-bonding interactions. The role of the water cluster is not only isolating and stabilizing the Pt atoms, but also regulating the charge of the metal and the adsorption of reactants. This is shown for the low-temperature water-gas shift reaction (WGSR: CO + H2 O → CO2 + H2 ), where both metal coordinated and H-bonded water molecules trigger a double water attack mechanism to CO and give CO2 with both oxygen atoms coming from water. The stabilized Pt1+ single sites allow performing the WGSR at temperatures as low as 50 °C.

7.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 57(21): 6186-6191, 2018 05 22.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29600831

RESUMO

The gram-scale synthesis, stabilization, and characterization of well-defined ultrasmall subnanometric catalytic clusters on solids is a challenge. The chemical synthesis and X-ray snapshots of Pt02 clusters, homogenously distributed and densely packaged within the channels of a metal-organic framework, is presented. This hybrid material catalyzes efficiently, and even more importantly from an economic and environmental viewpoint, at low temperature (25 to 140 °C), energetically costly industrial reactions in the gas phase such as HCN production, CO2 methanation, and alkene hydrogenations. These results open the way for the design of precisely defined catalytically active ultrasmall metal clusters in solids for technically easier, cheaper, and dramatically less-dangerous industrial reactions.

8.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 10(3): 2354-2359, 2018 Jan 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29261284

RESUMO

Nanoencapsulation has proven to be an efficient route to increase significantly the solubility and bioavailability of organic compounds. This aspect of nanotechnology is illustrated for the case of phthalimide-lactone (PL), a recently synthesized strigolactone mimic whose very limited solubility in water, as a free chemical, precludes its practical use as an agrochemical in the fight against parasitic plants. Pluronic F-127 (P127) nanoparticles functionalized with PL have been synthesized and embedded in a polymeric matrix of poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA). Low-voltage and medium voltage imaging and spectroscopic scanning electron microscopy (S(T)EM) techniques were combined to confirm the synthesis of multicore nanoparticles that were rich in nitrogen, a finding that is due to the successful encapsulation of PL. This PL@P127/PVA nanobiostimulator formulation has an impressive solubility in water, that is, 27 times higher than that of pure phthalimide-lactone. Also critical from the functional point of view, comparative bioassays clearly showed that the intrinsic stimulatory activity of this agrochemical is fully maintained in the nanoencapsulated formulation.


Assuntos
Elétrons , Microscopia Eletrônica de Varredura , Nanopartículas , Álcool de Polivinil , Solubilidade
9.
Nanoscale Res Lett ; 11(1): 461, 2016 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27757941

RESUMO

The enhancement of the performance of advanced nitride-based optoelectronic devices requires the fine tuning of their composition, which has to be determined with a high accuracy and at the nanometer scale. For that purpose, we have evaluated and compared energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) in a scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) and atom probe tomography (APT) in terms of composition analysis of AlGaN/GaN multilayers. Both techniques give comparable results with a composition accuracy better than 0.6 % even for layers as thin as 3 nm. In case of EDX, we show the relevance of correcting the X-ray absorption by simultaneous determination of the mass thickness and chemical composition at each point of the analysis. Limitations of both techniques are discussed when applied to specimens with different geometries or compositions.

10.
Langmuir ; 32(17): 4313-22, 2016 05 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27058299

RESUMO

Using a method that combines experimental and simulated Aberration-Corrected High Resolution Electron Microscopy images with digital image processing and structure modeling, strain distribution maps within gold nanoparticles relevant to real powder type catalysts, i.e., smaller than 3 nm, and supported on a ceria-based mixed oxide have been determined. The influence of the reduction state of the support and particle size has been examined. In this respect, it has been proven that reduction even at low temperatures induces a much larger compressive strain on the first {111} planes at the interface. This increase in compression fully explains, in accordance with previous DFT calculations, the loss of CO adsorption capacity of the interface area previously reported for Au supported on ceria-based oxides.

11.
Chemphyschem ; 17(5): 654-9, 2016 Mar 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26455437

RESUMO

tert-butylthiol (tBuSH) is used as the sulfur source, surface ligand and co-solvent in the synthesis of CuInS2 nanocrystals (NCs). The presented method gives direct access to short-ligand-capped NCs without post-synthetic ligand exchange. The obtained 5 nm CuInS2 NCs crystallize in the cubic sphalerite phase with space group F-43m and a lattice parameter a=5.65 Å. Their comparably large optical and electrochemical band gap of 2.6-2.7 eV is attributed to iodine incorporation into the crystal structure as reflected by the composition Cu1.04 In0.96 S1.84 I0.62 determined by EDX. Conductivity measurements on thin films of the tBuSH-capped NCs result in a value of 2.5(.) 10(-2)  S m(-1) , which represents an increase by a factor of 400 compared to established dodecanethiol-capped CuInS2 NCs.

12.
J Am Chem Soc ; 137(31): 9943-52, 2015 Aug 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26200758

RESUMO

Tin sulfide nanoparticles have a great potential for use in a broad range of applications related to solar energy conversion (photovoltaics, photocatalysis), electrochemical energy storage, and thermoelectrics. The development of chemical synthesis methods allowing for the precise control of size, shape, composition, and crystalline phase is essential. We present a novel approach giving access to monodisperse square SnS nanoplatelets, whose dimensions can be adjusted in the range of 4-15 nm (thickness) and 15-100 nm (edge length). Their growth occurs via controlled assembly of initially formed polyhedral seed nanoparticles, which themselves originate from an intermediate tetrachlorotin-oleate complex. The SnS nanoplatelets crystallize in the α-SnS orthorhombic herzenbergite structure (space group Pnma) with no evidence of secondary phases. Electron tomography, high angle annular dark field scanning transmission electron microscopy and electron diffraction combined with image simulations evidence the presence of ordered Sn vacancy rich (100) planes within the SnS nanoplatelets, in accordance with their slightly S-rich composition observed. When using elemental sulfur instead of thioacetamide as the sulfur source, the same reaction yields small (2-3 nm) spherical SnS2 nanoparticles, which crystallize in the berndtite 4H crystallographic phase (space group P3m1). They exhibit quantum confinement (E(g) = 2.8 eV vs 2.2 eV in the bulk) and room temperature photoluminescence. By means of electrochemical measurements we determined their electron affinity EA = -4.8 eV, indicating the possibility to use them as a substitute for CdS (EA = -4.6 eV) in the buffer layer of thin film solar cells.

13.
J Phys Chem Lett ; 5(3): 434-9, 2014 Feb 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26276588

RESUMO

Following a well-defined series of acid and heat treatments on a benchmark Pt3Co/C sample, three different nanostructures of interest for the electrocatalysis of the oxygen reduction reaction were tailored. These nanostructures could be sorted into the "Pt-skin" structure, made of one pure Pt overlayer, and the "Pt-skeleton" structure, made of 2-3 Pt overlayers surrounding the Pt-Co alloy core. Using a unique combination of high-resolution aberration-corrected STEM-EELS, XRD, EXAFS, and XANES measurements, we provide atomically resolved pictures of these different nanostructures, including measurement of the Pt-shell thickness forming in acidic media and the resulting changes of the bulk and core chemical composition. It is shown that the Pt-skin is reverted toward the Pt-skeleton upon contact with acid electrolyte. This change in structure causes strong variations of the chemical composition.

14.
Nanoscale ; 5(22): 10945-55, 2013 Nov 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24062024

RESUMO

The present work focuses on the study of the three-dimensional (3D) morphology of polymer and nanoparticle hybrid nanocomposites used as active layers in solution-processed solar cells. The hybrid consists of blends of regioregular poly(3-alkylthiophene) and CdSe nanorods. Electron tomography (ET) analysis performed in high-angle annular dark-field scanning transmission electron microscopy (HAADF-STEM) allows resolving single nanorods in the hybrid blend. These results are compared with those obtained using focused ion beam coupled with scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM), operated in a so-called 3D "slice-and-view" mode. This technique allows 3D information to be obtained on a whole device stack (hybrid active layers plus electrodes and the substrate) for significantly larger surface areas than with ET (~10 vs. ~0.1 µm(2)). The combination of ET and 3D FIB "slice-and-view" reconstructions provides complementary and coherent information on the 3D morphology of the hybrid systems at different length scales. Phase separation between the nanoparticles and the polymer is investigated by a quantitative analysis of the reconstructed volumes and is related to the performances of the hybrid devices.


Assuntos
Nanotubos/química , Polímeros/química , Energia Solar , Compostos de Cádmio/química , Piridinas/química , Compostos de Selênio/química , Tiofenos/química
15.
Chem Commun (Camb) ; 49(60): 6722-4, 2013 Aug 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23785711

RESUMO

Nano-structural and nano-analytical studies show that the dramatic difference in CO oxidation activity observed between two Au/Ce0.50Tb0.12Zr0.38O2-x samples prepared by deposition-precipitation with urea and further activated under oxidising or reducing conditions is due to the poisoning effect of a very thin layer of carbon grown on the pre-reduced catalyst.

16.
ACS Nano ; 6(8): 6812-20, 2012 Aug 28.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22789638

RESUMO

A variety of advanced (scanning) transmission electron microscopy experiments, carried out in aberration-corrected equipment, provide direct evidence about subtle structural changes taking place at nanometer-sized Au||ceria oxide interfaces, which agrees with the occurrence of charge transfer effects between the reduced support and supported gold nanoparticles suggested by macroscopic techniques. Tighter binding of the gold nanoparticles onto the ceria oxide support when this is reduced is revealed by the structural analysis. This structural modification is accompanied by parallel deactivation of the CO chemisorption capacity of the gold nanoparticles, which is interpreted in exact quantitative terms as due to deactivation of the gold atoms at the perimeter of the Au||cerium oxide interface.


Assuntos
Cério/química , Ouro/química , Nanoestruturas/química , Nanoestruturas/ultraestrutura , Transporte de Elétrons , Substâncias Macromoleculares/química , Teste de Materiais , Microscopia Eletrônica de Transmissão , Conformação Molecular , Tamanho da Partícula , Propriedades de Superfície
19.
Chemistry ; 16(31): 9536-43, 2010 Aug 16.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20572188

RESUMO

The influence of the highly dispersed gold phase on the CO-support interaction occurring in two 2.5 wt % Au/Ce(0.62)Zr(0.38)O(2) catalysts with medium (Au/CZ-MD) and high (Au/CZ-HD) metal dispersion is quantitatively assessed. For this purpose, we have followed an approach in which high-angle annular dark-field scanning transmission electron microscopy (HAADF-STEM), computer modelling, volumetric adsorption and FTIR spectroscopy studies are combined. This approach has already been fruitfully applied to the investigation of the specific CO-metal adsorption in Au/ceria-zirconia catalysts. As deduced from the experimental studies reported herein, the presence of gold dramatically increases the amount of CO strongly chemisorbed on the support. Moreover, this amount is sensitive to the metal dispersion, thus suggesting the occurrence of a mechanism in which the CO molecules that are initially adsorbed on the gold nanoparticles are further transferred to the support by means of a spillover process. An annular model is proposed for the growth of the CO phase adsorbed on the ceria-zirconia mixed oxide in the presence of Au. By assuming this model, we have estimated the width of the annulus, Delta r, of the adsorbed CO grown around the Au nanoparticles in Au/CZ-MD and Au/CZ-HD catalysts. This value is found to be very close to Delta r approximately 2 nm in both cases, the coincidence lending some additional support to the model. To further confirm this proposal, we have investigated the influence of CO pre-adsorption on the D(2)-Au/CZ-MD interaction, at 298 K. As revealed by FTIR spectroscopy, the kinetics of the deuterium spillover is significantly disturbed by the pre-adsorbed CO, which is fully consistent with an annular model for the CO adsorption. We conclude from the global analysis of the results reported here and those already available on CO-Au adsorption that the appropriate combination of nanostructural, computer modelling and chemical techniques is a powerful tool allowing us to gain a comprehensive picture of the complex series of processes involved in the CO adsorption on this relevant family of gold catalysts.

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