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1.
Adv Mater ; 32(23): e1906478, 2020 Jun.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32347620

RESUMO

Above-equilibrium "hot"-carrier generation in metals is a promising route to convert photons into electrical charge for efficient near-infrared optoelectronics. However, metals that offer both hot-carrier generation in the near-infrared and sufficient carrier lifetimes remain elusive. Alloys can offer emergent properties and new design strategies compared to pure metals. Here, it is shown that a noble-transition alloy, Aux Pd1- x , outperforms its constituent metals concerning generation and lifetime of hot carriers when excited in the near-infrared. At optical fiber wavelengths (e.g., 1550 nm), Au50 Pd50 provides a 20-fold increase in the number of ≈0.8 eV hot holes, compared to Au, and a threefold increase in the carrier lifetime, compared to Pd. The discovery that noble-transition alloys can excel at hot-carrier generation reveals a new material platform for near-infrared optoelectronic devices.

2.
Langmuir ; 36(14): 3703-3712, 2020 Apr 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32202121

RESUMO

The crucial roles of the ionization state and counterion presence on the phase behavior of fatty acid in aqueous solutions are well-established. However, the effects of counterions on the adsorption and morphological state of fatty acid on nanoparticle surfaces are largely unknown. This knowledge gap exists due to the high complexity of the interactions between nanoparticles, counterions, and fatty acid molecules in aqueous solution. In this study, we use adsorption isotherms, small angle neutron scattering, and all-atom molecular dynamic simulations to investigate the effect of addition of ethanolamine as a counterion on the adsorption and self-assembly of decanoic acid onto aminopropyl-modified silica nanoparticles. We show that the morphology of the fatty acid assemblies on silica nanoparticles changes from discrete surface patches to a continuous bilayer by increasing concentration of the counterion. This morphological behavior of fatty acid on the oppositely charged nanoparticle surface alters the interfacial activity of the fatty acid-nanoparticle complex and thus governs the stability of the foam formed by the mixture. Our study provides new insights into the structure-property relationship of fatty acid-nanoparticle complexes and outlines a framework to program the stability of foams formed by mixtures of nanoparticles and amphiphiles.

3.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 2575, 2019 06 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31189873

RESUMO

Active colloids are a class of microparticles that 'swim' through fluids by breaking the symmetry of the force distribution on their surfaces. Our ability to direct these particles along complex trajectories in three-dimensional (3D) space requires strategies to encode the desired forces and torques at the single particle level. Here, we show that spherical colloids with metal patches of low symmetry self-propel along non-linear 3D trajectories when powered remotely by an alternating current (AC) electric field. In particular, particles with triangular patches of approximate mirror symmetry trace helical paths along the axis of the field. We demonstrate that the speed and shape of the particle's trajectory can be tuned by the applied field strength and the patch geometry. We show that helical motion can enhance particle transport through porous materials with implications for the design of microrobots that can navigate complex environments.

4.
Soft Matter ; 15(3): 350-354, 2019 Jan 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30468443

RESUMO

The orientation of cytochrome c molecules at the surface of silica nanoparticles was studied in a wide pH range by combining small-angle neutron scattering, adsorption measurements, and molecular dynamics simulations. The results indicate a reorientation of the ellipsoidal protein from head-on to side-on as the pH is increased. This is attributed to changes in the surface charge distribution of both the protein and the nanoparticles.


Assuntos
Citocromos c/química , Nanopartículas/química , Dióxido de Silício/química , Enzimas Imobilizadas/química , Concentração de Íons de Hidrogênio , Simulação de Dinâmica Molecular , Eletricidade Estática
5.
Langmuir ; 34(50): 15416-15424, 2018 12 18.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30421934

RESUMO

Drying sessile droplets is a promising route to transform colloidal dispersions into surface coatings, which are widely used in material design and biochemical detection. However, directing the assembly of the particles within drying droplets and achieving surface patterns beyond the well-known coffee-ring formation remain a challenge. Here, we present a new principle of directing the assembly of nonmagnetic colloidal particles dispersed in a magnetic fluid and generating unusual surface patterns. We use the ability of ferrofluids to change phases with the application of magnetic fields to program the assembly of nonmagnetic microparticles present in drying sessile droplets. We show that in the absence of external magnetic field, the superparamagnetic nanoparticles in the magnetic fluid are spontaneously transported to the droplet edge because of solvent evaporation. This nanoparticle transport leads to the formation of nanoparticle-rich edge and nanoparticle-depleted center of the drying droplet. Upon the application of a uniform external magnetic field, the asymmetry in the magnetic nanoparticle distribution drives a magnetostatic convection and finger-like instability from the droplet edge to the center. This magnetic microconvection from droplet edge-to-center reverses the particle transport from center-to-edge, well-known for drying droplets in the absence of external field. We use this magnetostatic microconvection to assemble secondary nonmagnetic microspheres in droplets, overwriting ring formation and direct their assembly into four distinct kinetically stable states. The method presented here offers an active control over the colloidal assembly achieved by drying sessile droplets and thus enables a new route for fabricating complex patterns and functional surface coating.

6.
J Chem Theory Comput ; 13(8): 3814-3828, 2017 Aug 08.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28628314

RESUMO

We study the vertical and adiabatic ionization potentials and electron affinities of bare and hydroxylated TiO2 nanoclusters, as well as their fundamental gap and exciton binding energy values, to understand how the clusters' electronic properties change as a function of size and hydroxylation. In addition, we have employed a range of many-body methods; including G0W0, qsGW, EA/IP-EOM-CCSD, and DFT (B3LYP, PBE), to compare the performance and predictions of the different classes of methods. We demonstrate that, for bare clusters, all many-body methods predict the same trend with cluster size. The highest occupied and lowest unoccupied DFT orbitals follow the same trends as the electron affinity and ionization potentials predicted by the many-body methods, but are generally far too shallow and deep respectively in absolute terms. In contrast, the ΔDFT method is found to yield values in the correct energy window. However, its predictions depend upon the functional used and do not necessarily follow trends based on the many-body methods. Adiabatic potentials are predicted to be similar to their vertical counterparts and holes found to be trapped more strongly than excess electrons. The effect of hydroxylation on the clusters is to open up both the optical and fundamental gap. Finally, a simple microscopic explanation for the observed trends with cluster size and upon hydroxylation is proposed in terms of the onsite electrostatic potential.

7.
ACS Nano ; 10(7): 7008-22, 2016 07 26.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27299676

RESUMO

Understanding how additives interact and segregate within bulk heterojunction (BHJ) thin films is critical for exercising control over structure at multiple length scales and delivering improvements in photovoltaic performance. The morphological evolution of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) and phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) blends that are commensurate with the size of a BHJ thin film is examined using petascale coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations. Comparisons between two-component and three-component systems containing short P3HT chains as additives undergoing thermal annealing demonstrate that the short chains alter the morphology in apparently useful ways: they efficiently migrate to the P3HT/PCBM interface, increasing the P3HT domain size and interfacial area. Simulation results agree with depth profiles determined from neutron reflectometry measurements that reveal PCBM enrichment near substrate and air interfaces but a decrease in that PCBM enrichment when a small amount of short P3HT chains are integrated into the BHJ blend. Atomistic simulations of the P3HT/PCBM blend interfaces show a nonmonotonic dependence of the interfacial thickness as a function of number of repeat units in the oligomeric P3HT additive, and the thiophene rings orient parallel to the interfacial plane as they approach the PCBM domain. Using the nanoscale geometries of the P3HT oligomers, LUMO and HOMO energy levels calculated by density functional theory are found to be invariant across the donor/acceptor interface. These connections between additives, processing, and morphology at all length scales are generally useful for efforts to improve device performance.

8.
J Chem Phys ; 144(14): 144101, 2016 Apr 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27083702

RESUMO

In this paper, we report on the development of a parallel implementation of the coupled-cluster (CC) Green function formulation (GFCC) employing single and double excitations in the cluster operator (GFCCSD). A key aspect of this work is the determination of the frequency dependent self-energy, Σ(ω). The detailed description of the underlying algorithm is provided, including approximations used that preserve the pole structure of the full GFCCSD method, thereby reducing the computational costs while maintaining an accurate character of methodology. Furthermore, for systems with strong local correlation, our formulation reveals a diagonally dominate block structure where as the non-local correlation increases, the block size increases proportionally. To demonstrate the accuracy of our approach, several examples including calculations of ionization potentials for benchmark systems are presented and compared against experiment.

9.
J Chem Phys ; 143(22): 224301, 2015 Dec 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26671369

RESUMO

The photophysics of the Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) chromophore is critically dependent on its local structure and on its environment. Despite extensive experimental and computational studies, there remain many open questions regarding the key fundamental variables that govern this process. One outstanding problem is the role of autoionization as a possible relaxation pathway of the excited state under different environmental conditions. This issue is considered in our work through combined experimental and theoretical studies of microsolvated clusters of the deprotonated p-hydroxybenzylidene-2,3-dimethylimidazolinone anion (HBDI(-)), an analog of the GFP chromophore. Through selective generation of microsolvated structures of predetermined size and subsequent analysis of experimental photoelectron spectra by high level ab initio methods, we are able to precisely identify the structure of the system, establish the accuracy of theoretical data, and provide reliable description of auto-ionization process as a function of hydrogen-bonding environment. Our study clearly illustrates the first few water molecules progressively stabilize the excited state of the chromophore anion against the autodetached neutral state, which should be an important trait for crystallographic water molecules in GFPs that has not been fully explored to date.


Assuntos
Compostos de Benzilideno/química , Elétrons , Proteínas de Fluorescência Verde/química , Imidazóis/química , Espectroscopia Fotoeletrônica , Teoria Quântica , Água/química , Ânions/química , Estrutura Molecular
10.
Sci Rep ; 5: 7634, 2015 Jan 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25579392

RESUMO

The discovery of magnetism in carbon structures containing zigzag edges has stimulated new directions in the development and design of spintronic devices. However, many of the proposed structures are designed without incorporating a key phenomenon known as topological frustration, which leads to localized non-bonding states (free radicals), increasing chemical reactivity and instability. By applying graph theory, we demonstrate that topological frustrations can be avoided while simultaneously preserving spin ordering, thus providing alternative spintronic designs. Using tight-binding calculations, we show that all original functionality is not only maintained but also enhanced, resulting in the theoretically highest performing devices in the literature today. Furthermore, it is shown that eliminating armchair regions between zigzag edges significantly improves spintronic properties such as magnetic coupling.

11.
J Chem Phys ; 141(7): 074304, 2014 Aug 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25149783

RESUMO

In both molecular and periodic solid-state systems there is a need for the accurate determination of the ionization potential and the electron affinity for systems ranging from light harvesting polymers and photocatalytic compounds to semiconductors. The development of a Green's function approach based on the coupled cluster (CC) formalism would be a valuable tool for addressing many properties involving many-body interactions along with their associated correlation functions. As a first step in this direction, we have developed an accurate and parallel efficient approach based on the equation of motion-CC technique. To demonstrate the high degree of accuracy and numerical efficiency of our approach we calculate the ionization potential and electron affinity for C60 and C70. Accurate predictions for these molecules are well beyond traditional molecular scale studies. We compare our results with experiments and both quantum Monte Carlo and GW calculations.

12.
J Phys Chem Lett ; 3(7): 891-5, 2012 Apr 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26286416

RESUMO

Periodic density functional theory (DFT) calculations indicate that the intrinsic activity of Au, Ag, Pt, Pd, Ir, and Ru for the oxygen reduction reaction by Li (Li-ORR) forms a volcano-like trend with respect to the adsorption energy of oxygen, with Pt and Pd being the most active. The trend is based on two mechanisms: the reduction of molecular O2 on Au and Ag and of atomic O on the remaining metals. Step edges are found to be more active for catalyzing the Li-ORR than close-packed surfaces. Our findings identify important considerations in the design of catalyst-promoted air cathodes for nonaqueous Li-air batteries.

13.
ACS Nano ; 4(8): 4412-9, 2010 Aug 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20731427

RESUMO

The novel phenomena induced by symmetry breaking at homointerfaces between ferroic variants in ferroelectric and ferroelastic materials have attracted recently much attention. Using variable temperature scanning microwave microscopy, we demonstrate the mesoscopic strain-induced metal-insulator phase transitions in the vicinity of ferroelastic domain walls in the semiconductive VO(2) that nucleated at temperatures as much as 10-12 degrees C below bulk transition, resulting in the formation of conductive channels in the material. Density functional theory is used to rationalize the process low activation energy. This behavior, linked to the strain inhomogeneity inherent in ferroelastic materials, can strongly affect interpretation of phase-transition studies in VO(2) and similar materials with symmetry-lowering transitions, and can also be used to enable new generations of electronic devices though strain engineering of conductive and semiconductive regions.

14.
J Chem Phys ; 133(2): 024703, 2010 Jul 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20632766

RESUMO

Lithium-oxygen has one of the highest specific energies among known electrochemical couples and holds the promise of substantially boosting the specific energy of portable batteries. Mechanistic information of the oxygen reduction reaction by Li (Li-ORR) is scarce, and the factors limiting the discharge and charge efficiencies of the Li-oxygen cathode are not understood. To shed light on the fundamental surface chemistry of Li-ORR, we have performed periodic density functional theory calculations in conjunction with thermodynamic modeling for two metal surfaces, Au(111) and Pt(111). On clean Au(111) initial O(2) reduction via superoxide (LiO(2)) formation has a low reversible potential of 1.51 V. On clean Pt(111), the dissociative adsorption of O(2) is facile and the reduction of atomic O has a reversible potential of 1.97 V, whereas the associative channel involving LiO(2) is limited by product stability versus O to 2.04 V. On both surfaces O(2) lithiation significantly weakens the O-O bond, so the product selectivity of the Li-ORR is monoxide (Li(x)O), not peroxide (Li(x)O(2)). Furthermore, on both surfaces Li(x)O species are energetically driven to form (Li(x)O)(n) aggregates, and the interface between (Li(x)O)(n) and the metal surfaces are active sites for forming and dissociating LiO(2). Given that bulk Li(2)O((s)) is found to be globally the most stable phase up to 2.59 V, the presence of available metal sites may allow the cathode to access the bulk Li(2)O phase across a wide range of potentials. During cycling, the discharge process (oxygen reduction) is expected to begin with the reduction of chemisorbed atomic O instead of gas-phase O(2). On Au(111) this occurs at 2.42 V, whereas the greater stability of O on Pt(111) limits the reversible potential to 1.97 V. Therefore, the intrinsic reactivity of Pt(111) renders it less effective for Li-ORR than Au(111).

15.
Phys Chem Chem Phys ; 10(39): 6009-18, 2008 Oct 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-18825289

RESUMO

As catalysis research strives toward designing structurally and functionally well-defined catalytic centers containing as few active metal atoms as possible, the importance of understanding the reactivity of small metal clusters, and in particular of systematic comparisons of reaction types and cluster sizes, has grown concomitantly. Here we report density functional theory calculations (GGA-PW91) that probe the relationship between particle size, intermediate structures, and energetics of CO and NO oxidation by molecular and atomic oxygen on Pt(x) clusters (x = 1-5 and 10). The preferred structures, charge distributions, vibrational spectra, and energetics are systematically examined for oxygen (O(2), 2O, and O), CO, CO(2), NO, and NO(2), for CO/NO co-adsorbed with O(2), 2O, and O, and for CO(2)/NO(2) co-adsorbed with O. The binding energies of oxygen, CO, NO, and of the oxidation products CO(2) and NO(2) are all markedly enhanced on Pt(x) compared to Pt(111), and they trend toward the Pt(111) levels as cluster size increases. Because of the strong interaction of both the reactants and products with the Pt(x) clusters, deep energy sinks develop on the potential energy surfaces of the respective oxidation processes, indicating worse reaction energetics than on Pt(111). Thus the smallest Pt clusters are less effective for catalyzing CO and NO oxidation in their original state than bulk Pt. Our results further suggests that oxidation by molecular O(2) is thermodynamically more favourable than by atomic O on Pt(x). Conditions and applications in which the Pt(x) clusters may be effective catalysts are discussed.


Assuntos
Monóxido de Carbono/química , Modelos Químicos , Óxido Nítrico/química , Platina/química , Teoria Quântica , Termodinâmica , Adsorção , Oxirredução , Oxigênio/química , Tamanho da Partícula , Propriedades de Superfície
16.
J Phys Chem B ; 110(33): 16591-9, 2006 Aug 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-16913794

RESUMO

As synthetic nanocatalysis strives to create and apply well-defined catalytic centers containing as few as a handful of active metal atoms, it becomes particularly important to understand the structures, compositions, and reactivity of small metal clusters as a function of size and chemical environment. As a part of our effort to better understand the oxidation chemistry of Pt clusters, we present here a comprehensive set of density functional theory simulations combined with thermodynamic modeling that allow us to map out the T-p(O)2 phase diagrams and predict the oxygen affinity of Pt(x)O(y) clusters, x = 1-3. We find that the Pt clusters have a much stronger tendency to form oxides than does the bulk metal, that these oxides persist over a wide range of oxygen chemical potentials, and that the most stable cluster stoichiometry varies with size and may differ from the stoichiometry of the stable bulk oxide in the same environment. Further, the facility with which the clusters are reduced depends both on size and on composition. These models provide a systematic framework for understanding the compositions and energies of redox reactions of discrete metal clusters of interest in supported and gas-phase nanocatalysis.

17.
J Phys Chem A ; 110(17): 5839-46, 2006 May 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-16640379

RESUMO

The catalytic properties of transition metal particles often depend crucially on their chemical environment, but so far, little is known about how the effects of the environment vary with particle size, especially for clusters consisting of only a few atoms. To gain insight into this topic, we have studied the oxygen affinity of free Pt(x) clusters as a function of cluster size (x = 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 10) using density functional theory (DFT) calculations (GGA-PW91). DFT-based Nosé-Hoover molecular dynamics has been used to explore the configuration space of the Pt(x)O(x) and Pt(x)O(2x) clusters, leading to the discovery of several novel Pt-oxide structures. The formation of small Pt-oxide clusters by oxidizing the corresponding Pt(x) clusters is found to be significantly more exothermic than the formation of bulk Pt-oxides from Pt metal. The exothermicity generally increases as cluster size decreases but exhibits strongly nonlinear dependence on the cluster size. The nanoclusters are also structurally distinct from the bulk oxides and prefer one- and two-dimensional chain and ringlike shapes. These findings help elucidate the oxidation behavior of Pt nanoclusters and lay the foundation for understanding the reactivity of Pt nanoclusters in oxidizing chemical environments.

18.
J Phys Chem B ; 109(16): 7671-85, 2005 Apr 28.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-16851891

RESUMO

Computational simulations were used to investigate the dynamics and resulting structures of several para-phenylenevinylene (PPV) based polymers and oligomers (PPV, 2-methoxy-5-(2'-ethyl-hexyloxy)-p-phenylenevinylene --> MEH-PPV and 2,5,2',5'-tetrahexyloxy-7,8'-dicyano-p-phenylenevinylene --> CN-PPV). The results show how the morphology and structure are controlled to a large extent by the nature of the solute-solvent interactions in the initial solution-phase preparation. Secondary structural organization is induced by using the solution-phase structures to generate solvent-free single molecule nanoparticles. Isolation of these single molecule nanostructures from microdroplets of dilute solution results in the formation of electrostatically oriented nanostructures at a glass surface. Our structural modeling suggests that these oriented nanostructures consist of folded PPV conjugated segments with folds occurring at tetrahedral defects (sp3 C-C bonds) within the polymer chain. This picture is supported by detailed experimental fluorescence and scanning probe microscopy studies. We also present results from a fully quantum theoretical treatment of these systems which support the general conclusion of structure-mediated photophysical properties.

19.
Nature ; 428(6984): 730-3, 2004 Apr 15.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-15085126

RESUMO

Silicon nitride (Si3N4) ceramics are used in numerous applications because of their superior mechanical properties. Their intrinsically brittle nature is a critical issue, but can be overcome by introducing whisker-like microstructural features. However, the formation of such anisotropic grains is very sensitive to the type of cations used as the sintering additives. Understanding the origin of dopant effects, central to the design of high-performance Si3N4 ceramics, has been sought for many years. Here we show direct images of dopant atoms (La) within the nanometre-scale intergranular amorphous films typically found at grain boundaries, using aberration corrected Z-contrast scanning transmission electron microscopy. It is clearly shown that the La atoms preferentially segregate to the amorphous/crystal interfaces. First-principles calculations confirm the strong preference of La for the crystalline surfaces, which is essential for forming elongated grains and a toughened microstructure. Whereas principles of micrometre-scale structural design are currently used to improve the mechanical properties of ceramics, this work represents a step towards the atomic-level structural engineering required for the next generation of ceramics.

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