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1.
Nat Mater ; 2020 Jan 13.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31932669

RESUMO

The ability to organize nanoscale objects into well-defined three-dimensional (3D) arrays can translate advances in nanoscale synthesis into targeted material fabrication. Despite successes in nanoparticle assembly, most extant methods are system specific and not fully compatible with biomolecules. Here, we report a platform for creating distinct 3D ordered arrays from different nanomaterials using DNA-prescribed and valence-controlled material voxels. These material voxels consist of 3D DNA frames that integrate nano-objects within their scaffold, thus enabling the object's valence and coordination to be determined by the frame's vertices, which can bind to each other through hybridization. Such DNA material voxels define the lattice symmetry through the spatially prescribed valence decoupling the 3D assembly process from the nature of the nanocomponents, such as their intrinsic properties and shapes. We show this by assembling metallic and semiconductor nanoparticles and also protein superlattices. We support the technological potential of such an assembly approach by fabricating light-emitting 3D arrays with diffraction-limited spectral purity and 3D enzymatic arrays with increased activity.

2.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 5692, 2019 Dec 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31831748

RESUMO

Pursuing active and durable water splitting electrocatalysts is of vital significance for solving the sluggish kinetics of the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) process in energy supply. Herein, theoretical calculations identify that the local distortion-strain effect in amorphous RuTe2 system abnormally sensitizes the Te-pπ coupling capability and enhances the electron-transfer of Ru-sites, in which the excellent inter-orbital p-d transfers determine strong electronic activities for boosting OER performance. Thus, a robust electrocatalyst based on amorphous RuTe2 porous nanorods (PNRs) is successfully fabricated. In the acidic water splitting, a-RuTe2 PNRs exhibit a superior performance, which only require a cell voltage of 1.52 V to reach a current density of 10 mA cm-2. Detailed investigations show that the high density of defects combine with oxygen atoms to form RuOxHy species, which are conducive to the OER. This work offers valuable insights for constructing robust electrocatalysts based on theoretical calculations guided by rational design and amorphous materials.

3.
Nanoscale ; 11(42): 20301-20306, 2019 Nov 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31633704

RESUMO

Rational designing of catalysts to promote the sluggish kinetics of the cathode oxygen reduction reaction in proton exchange membrane fuel cells is still challenging, yet of crucial importance to its commercial application. In this work, on the basis of theoretical DFT calculations which suggest that order structured fct-phased PtFe (O-PtFe) with an atomic Pt shell exhibits superior electrocatalytic performance towards the ORR, the desired structure was prepared by using a scalable impregnation-reduction method. The as-prepared O-PtFe delivered enhanced activity (0.68 A mg-1Pt) and stability (73% activity retention after 10 000 potential cycles) compared with the corresponding disordered PtFe alloy (D-PtFe) and Pt. To confirm the excellent durability, in situ X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy was conducted to probe the local and electronic structure changes of O-PtFe during 10 000 cycle accelerated durability testing. We hope that this facile synthesis method and the in situ XAFS experiment could be readily adapted to other catalyst systems, facilitating the screening of highly efficient ORR catalysts for fuel cell application.

4.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 11(41): 37885-37891, 2019 Oct 16.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31589393

RESUMO

Elemental doping represents a prominent strategy to improve interfacial chemistry in battery materials. Manipulating the dopant spatial distribution and understanding the dynamic evolution of the dopants at the atomic scale can inform better design of the doping chemistry for batteries. In this work, we create a targeted hierarchical distribution of Ti4+, a popular doping element for oxide cathode materials, in LiNi0.8Mn0.1Co0.1O2 primary particles. We apply multiscale synchrotron/electron spectroscopy and imaging techniques as well as theoretical calculations to investigate the dynamic evolution of the doping chemical environment. The Ti4+ dopant is fully incorporated into the TMO6 octahedral coordination and is targeted to be enriched at the surface. Ti4+ in the TMO6 octahedral coordination increases the TM-O bond length and reduces the covalency between (Ni, Mn, Co) and O. The excellent reversibility of Ti4+ chemical environment gives rise to superior oxygen reversibility at the cathode-electrolyte interphase and in the bulk particles, leading to improved stability in capacity, energy, and voltage. Our work directly probes the chemical environment of doping elements and helps rationalize the doping strategy for high-voltage layered cathodes.

5.
Sci Rep ; 9(1): 12803, 2019 Sep 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31488874

RESUMO

We present a joint model based on deep learning that is designed to inpaint the missing-wedge sinogram of electron tomography and reduce the residual artifacts in the reconstructed tomograms. Traditional methods, such as weighted back projection (WBP) and simultaneous algebraic reconstruction technique (SART), lack the ability to recover the unacquired project information as a result of the limited tilt range; consequently, the tomograms reconstructed using these methods are distorted and contaminated with the elongation, streaking, and ghost tail artifacts. To tackle this problem, we first design a sinogram filling model based on the use of Residual-in-Residual Dense Blocks in a Generative Adversarial Network (GAN). Then, we use a U-net structured Generative Adversarial Network to reduce the residual artifacts. We build a two-step model to perform information recovery and artifacts removal in their respective suitable domain. Compared with the traditional methods, our method offers superior Peak Signal to Noise Ratio (PSNR) and the Structural Similarity Index (SSIM) to WBP and SART; even with a missing wedge of 45°, our method offers reconstructed images that closely resemble the ground truth with nearly no artifacts. In addition, our model has the advantage of not needing inputs from human operators or setting hyperparameters such as iteration steps and relaxation coefficient used in TV-based methods, which highly relies on human experience and parameter fine turning.

6.
J Am Chem Soc ; 141(25): 10007-10015, 2019 Jun 26.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31244137

RESUMO

Organic heterojunctions are widely used in organic electronics and they are composed of semiconductors interfaced together. Good ordering in the molecular packing inside the heterojunctions is highly desired but it is still challenging to interface organic single crystals to form single-crystalline heterojunctions. Here, we describe how organic heterojunctions are formed by interfacing two single crystals from a droplet of a mixed solution containing two semiconductors. Based on crystallization of six organic semiconductors from a droplet on a substrate, two distinct crystallization mechanisms have been recognized in the sense that crystals form at either the top interface between the air and solution or the bottom interface between the substrate and solution. The preference for one interface rather than the other depends on the semiconductor-substrate pair and, for a given semiconductor, it can be switched by changing the substrate, suggesting that the preference is associated with the semiconductor-substrate molecular interaction. Furthermore, simultaneous crystallization of two semiconductors at two different interfaces to reduce their mutual disturbance results in the formation of bilayer single crystals interfaced together for organic heterojunctions. These single-crystalline heterojunctions exhibit ambipolar charge transport in field-effect transistors, with the highest electron mobility of 1.90 cm2 V-1 s-1 and the highest hole mobility of 1.02 cm2 V-1 s-1. Hence, by elucidating the interfacial crystallization events, this work should greatly harvest the solution-grown organic single-crystalline heterojunctions.

7.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 116(24): 11618-11623, 2019 Jun 11.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31127040

RESUMO

The catalytic activity of low-dimensional electrocatalysts is highly dependent on their local atomic structures, particularly those less-coordinated sites found at edges and corners; therefore, a direct probe of the electrocatalytic current at specified local sites with true nanoscopic resolution has become critically important. Despite the growing availability of operando imaging tools, to date it has not been possible to measure the electrocatalytic activities from individual material edges and directly correlate those with the local structural defects. Herein, we show the possibility of using feedback and generation/collection modes of operation of the scanning electrochemical microscope (SECM) to independently image the topography and local electrocatalytic activity with 15-nm spatial resolution. We employed this operando microscopy technique to map out the oxygen evolution activity of a semi-2D nickel oxide nanosheet. The improved resolution and sensitivity enables us to distinguish the higher activities of the materials' edges from that of the fully coordinated surfaces in operando The combination of spatially resolved electrochemical information with state-of-the-art electron tomography, that unravels the 3D complexity of the edges, and ab initio calculations allows us to reveal the intricate coordination dependent activity along individual edges of the semi-2D material that is not achievable by other methods. The comparison of the simulated line scans to the experimental data suggests that the catalytic current density at the nanosheet edge is ∼200 times higher than that at the NiO basal plane.

8.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 1650, 2019 04 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30967531

RESUMO

Despite the importance of studying the instability of delithiated cathode materials, it remains difficult to underpin the degradation mechanism of lithium-rich cathode materials due to the complication of combined chemical and structural evolutions. Herein, we use state-of-the-art electron microscopy tools, in conjunction with synchrotron X-ray techniques and first-principle calculations to study a 4d-element-containing compound, Li2Ru0.5Mn0.5O3. We find surprisingly, after cycling, ruthenium segregates out as metallic nanoclusters on the reconstructed surface. Our calculations show that the unexpected ruthenium metal segregation is due to its thermodynamic insolubility in the oxygen deprived surface. This insolubility can disrupt the reconstructed surface, which explains the formation of a porous structure in this material. This work reveals the importance of studying the thermodynamic stability of the reconstructed film on the cathode materials and offers a theoretical guidance for choosing manganese substituting elements in lithium-rich as well as stoichiometric layer-layer compounds for stabilizing the cathode surface.

9.
ACS Nano ; 13(4): 3964-3970, 2019 Apr 23.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30794384

RESUMO

Topological defects in solid-state materials by breaking the translational symmetry offer emerging properties that are not present in their parental phases. For example, edge dislocations-the 2π phase-winding topological defects-in antiferromagnetic NiO crystals can exhibit ferromagnetic behaviors. Herein, we study how these defects could give rise to topological orders when they interact with a high-energy electron beam. To probe this interaction, we formed a coherent electron nanobeam in a scanning transmission electron microscope and recorded the far-field transmitted patterns as the beam steps through the edge dislocation core in [001] NiO. Surprisingly, we found the amplitude patterns of the ⟨020⟩ Bragg disks evolve in a similar manner to the evolution of an annular solar eclipse. Using the ptychographic technique, we recovered the missing phase information in the diffraction plane and revealed the topological phase vortices in the diffracted beams. Through atomic topological defects, the wave function of electrons can be converted from plane wave to electron vortex. Technologically, this approach provides a feasible route for the fabrication of phase plates that can generate electron vortex beams with an angular separation that is 3 orders of magnitude larger than what traditional nanofabrication technology can offer. This advance will enable the collection of magnetic circular dichroism spectra with high spatial resolution and high efficiency, boosting the understanding of the relationship between symmetry breaking and magnetic property of individual topological defect at the atomic scale.

10.
Nat Mater ; 18(2): 186, 2019 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30542150

RESUMO

In the version of this Article originally published, the diblock copolymer structure in Fig. 2a showed a single bond between the carbon and the oxygen atoms; it should have been a double bond. This has been corrected in all versions of the Article.

11.
Nat Mater ; 18(2): 169-174, 2019 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30510268

RESUMO

Surface encoding of colloidal nanoparticles with DNA is fundamental for fields where recognition interaction is required, particularly controllable material self-assembly. However, regioselective surface encoding of nanoparticles is still challenging because of the difficulty associated with breaking the identical chemical environment on nanoparticle surfaces. Here we demonstrate the selective blocking of nanoparticle surfaces with a diblock copolymer (polystyrene-b-polyacrylic acid). By tuning the interfacial free energies of a ternary system involving the nanoparticles, solvent and copolymer, controllable accessibilities to the nanoparticles' surfaces are obtained. Through the modification of the polymer-free surface region with single-stranded DNA, regioselective and programmable surface encoding is realized. The resultant interparticle binding potential is selective and directional, allowing for an increased degree of complexity of potential self-assemblies. The versatility of this regioselective surface encoding strategy is demonstrated on various nanoparticles of isotropic or anisotropic shape and a total of 24 distinct complex nanoassemblies are fabricated.

12.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 58(8): 2321-2325, 2019 Feb 18.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30548557

RESUMO

NH3 synthesis by the electrocatalytic N2 reduction reaction (NRR) under ambient conditions is an appealing alternative to the currently employed industrial method-the Haber-Bosch process-that requires high temperature and pressure. We report single Mo atoms anchored to nitrogen-doped porous carbon as a cost-effective catalyst for the NRR. Benefiting from the optimally high density of active sites and hierarchically porous carbon frameworks, this catalyst achieves a high NH3 yield rate (34.0±3.6 µg NH 3 h-1 mgcat. -1 ) and a high Faradaic efficiency (14.6±1.6 %) in 0.1 m KOH at room temperature. These values are considerably higher compared to previously reported non-precious-metal electrocatalysts. Moreover, this catalyst displays no obvious current drop during a 50 000 s NRR, and high activity and durability are achieved in 0.1 m HCl. The findings provide a promising lead for the design of efficient and robust single-atom non-precious-metal catalysts for the electrocatalytic NRR.

13.
ACS Nano ; 12(11): 11625-11631, 2018 Nov 27.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30481970

RESUMO

Exploring high-performance and cost-efficient electrocatalysts with unusual metastable phase offers opportunities for improving the electrochemical hydrogen generation, while it remains a great challenge to achieve them with desirable activity and stability. Herein, we report that the doping engineering in a metastable, hexagonal-close-packed nickel (hcp Ni) electrocatalyst is a largely unrevealed yet important factor in achieving an extremely active and stable electrocatalyst toward alkaline hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Theoretical predications and experimental results suggest that, while the stability of metastable hcp Ni electrocatalyst can be largely improved via the manganese (Mn) doping due to the lower formation energy and lattice stabilization, the MnO/hcp Ni surface promotes the HER via intrinsic favorable H2O adsorption and fast water dissociation kinetics. Consequently, the Mn-doped hcp Ni electrocatalyst shows a small overpotential of 80 mV at 10 mA/cm2 and a low Tafel slope of 68 mV/dec. The result is even approaching that of the commercial Pt/C, being one of the best reported non-noble metal HER electrocatalysts in alkaline media. Under long-term chronopotentiometry measurement, such electrocatalyst can endure at least 10 h with negligible activity decay and structure change. The present work demonstrates the dimension in boosting the electrocatalysis by doping engineering of metastable electrocatalysts.

14.
ACS Nano ; 12(8): 7866-7874, 2018 Aug 28.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30080965

RESUMO

The formation of hollow-structured oxide nanoparticles is primarily governed by the Kirkendall effect. However, the degree of complexity of the oxidation process multiplies in the bimetallic system because of the incorporation of more than one element. Spatially dependent oxidation kinetics controls the final morphology of the hollow nanoparticles, and the process is highly dependent on the elemental composition. Currently, a theoretical framework that can predict how different metal elements result in different oxide morphologies remains elusive. In this work, utilizing a combination of state-of-the-art in situ environmental transmission electron microscopy and three-dimensional (3D) chemically sensitive electron tomography, we provide an in situ and 3D investigation of the oxidation mechanism of the Ni-Fe nanoparticles. The direct measurements allow us to correlate the 3D elemental segregation in the particles with the oxidation morphologies, that is, single-cavity or dual-cavity hollow structure, and multicavity porous structures. Our findings in conjunction with theoretical calculations show that metal concentration, diffusivity, and particle size are important parameters that dictate the mechanical and phase stabilities of the hollow oxide shell, which in turn determine its barrier properties and the final hollow oxide morphology. It sheds light on how to use multielemental oxidation to control morphology in nanomaterials and demonstrates the power of 3D chemical imaging.

15.
ACS Nano ; 12(9): 9091-9100, 2018 Sep 25.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30148956

RESUMO

Nanocrystal (NC) solids are an exciting class of materials, whose physical properties are tunable by choice of the NCs as well as the strength of the interparticle coupling. One can consider these NCs as "artificial atoms" in analogy to the formation of condensed matter from atoms. Akin to atomic doping, the doping of a semiconducting NC solid with impurity NCs can drastically alter its electronic properties. A high degree of complexity is possible in these artificial structures by adjusting the size, shape, and composition of the building blocks, which enables "designer" materials with targeted properties. Here, we present the doping of the PbSe NC solids with a series of Au xAg1- x alloy nanoparticles (NPs). A combination of temperature-dependent electrical conductance and Seebeck coefficient measurements and room-temperature Hall effect measurements demonstrates that the incorporation of metal NPs both modifies the charge carrier density of the NC solids and introduces energy barriers for charge transport. These studies point to charge carrier injection from the metal NPs into the PbSe NC matrix. The charge carrier density and charge transport dynamics in the doped NC solids are adjustable in a wide range by employing the Au xAg1- x NP with different Au:Ag ratio as dopants. This doping strategy could be of great interest for thermoelectric applications taking advantage of the energy filtering effect introduced by the metal NPs.

16.
Ultramicroscopy ; 194: 175-181, 2018 11.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30149218

RESUMO

With recent rapid advancement in electron microscopy instrumentation, in particular, bright electron sources and monochromators, valence electron energy-loss spectroscopy (VEELS) has become attractive for retrieving band structures, optical properties, dielectric functions and phonon information of materials. However, Cherenkov radiation and surface-loss contribution significantly alter fine structures of VEELS, even in simple semiconductors and insulators. This leads to the problem that dielectric function or bandgap structure of these materials cannot be determined correctly if these effects are not removed. In this work we present a solution to this dilemma. We demonstrate that energy-loss function and real part of inverse complex dielectric function can be retrieved from raw data of VEELS. Based on the calculated example of Si, the limitation of our approach is discussed. We believe that our approach represents an improvement over previous procedures and has a broad prospect for applications.

17.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 10(28): 23842-23850, 2018 Jul 18.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29920072

RESUMO

Nickel-rich layered cathode materials have the potential to enable cheaper and higher energy lithium ion batteries. However, these materials face major challenges (e.g., surface reconstruction, microcracking, potential oxygen evolution) that can hinder the safety and cycle life of lithium ion batteries. Many studies of nickel-rich materials have focused on ways to improve performance. Understanding the effects of temperature and cycling on the chemical and structural transformations is essential to assess the performance and suitability of these materials for practical battery applications. The present study is focused on the spectroscopic analysis of surface changes within a strong performing LiNi0.8Mn0.1Co0.1O2 (NMC811) cathode material. We found that surface chemical and structural transformations (e.g., gradient metal reduction, oxygen loss, reconstruction, dissolution) occurred quicker and deeper than expected at higher temperatures. Even at lower temperatures, the degradation occurred rapidly and eventually matched the degradation at high temperatures. Despite these transformations, our performance results showed that a better performing nickel-rich NMC is possible. Establishing relationships between the atomic, structural, chemical, and physical properties of cathode materials and their behavior during cycling, as we have done here for NMC811, opens the possibility of developing lithium ion batteries with higher performance and longer life. Finally, our study also suggests that a separate, systematic, and elaborate study of surface chemistry is necessary for each NMC composition and electrolyte environment.

18.
Nano Lett ; 18(5): 3241-3249, 2018 05 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29667835

RESUMO

Chemical and mechanical properties interplay on the nanometric scale and collectively govern the functionalities of battery materials. Understanding the relationship between the two can inform the design of battery materials with optimal chemomechanical properties for long-life lithium batteries. Herein, we report a mechanism of nanoscale mechanical breakdown in layered oxide cathode materials, originating from oxygen release at high states of charge under thermal abuse conditions. We observe that the mechanical breakdown of charged Li1- xNi0.4Mn0.4Co0.2O2 materials proceeds via a two-step pathway involving intergranular and intragranular crack formation. Owing to the oxygen release, sporadic phase transformations from the layered structure to the spinel and/or rocksalt structures introduce local stress, which initiates microcracks along grain boundaries and ultimately leads to the detachment of primary particles, i.e., intergranular crack formation. Furthermore, intragranular cracks (pores and exfoliations) form, likely due to the accumulation of oxygen vacancies and continuous phase transformations at the surfaces of primary particles. Finally, finite element modeling confirms our experimental observation that the crack formation is attributable to the formation of oxygen vacancies, oxygen release, and phase transformations. This study is designed to directly observe the chemomechanical behavior of layered oxide cathode materials and provides a chemical basis for strengthening primary and secondary particles by stabilizing the oxygen anions in the lattice.

20.
Nat Chem ; 10(2): 149-154, 2018 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29359759

RESUMO

The efficiency with which renewable fuels and feedstocks are synthesized from electrical sources is limited at present by the sluggish oxygen evolution reaction (OER) in pH-neutral media. We took the view that generating transition-metal sites with high valence at low applied bias should improve the activity of neutral OER catalysts. Here, using density functional theory, we find that the formation energy of desired Ni4+ sites is systematically modulated by incorporating judicious combinations of Co, Fe and non-metal P. We therefore synthesized NiCoFeP oxyhydroxides and probed their oxidation kinetics with in situ soft X-ray absorption spectroscopy (sXAS). In situ sXAS studies of neutral-pH OER catalysts indicate ready promotion of Ni4+ under low overpotential conditions. The NiCoFeP catalyst outperforms IrO2 and retains its performance following 100 h of operation. We showcase NiCoFeP in a membrane-free CO2 electroreduction system that achieves a 1.99 V cell voltage at 10 mA cm-2, reducing CO2 into CO and oxidizing H2O to O2 with a 64% electricity-to-chemical-fuel efficiency.

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