Nano Research (NANO RES )

Publisher: Springer Verlag


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    Nano res
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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Being simple, inexpensive, scalable and environmentally friendly, microporous biomass biochars have been attracting enthusiastic attention for application in lithium-sulfur (Li−S) batteries. Herein, porous bamboo biochar is activated via a KOH/annealing process that creates a microporous structure, boosts surface area and enhances electronic conductivity. The treated sample is used to encapsulate sulfur to prepare microporous bamboo carbon-sulfur (BC-S) nanocomposite as the cathode for Li–S batteries for the first time. The BC-S nanocomposite with 50 wt% sulfur content delivers a high initial capacity of 1295 mAh/g at a low discharge rate of 160 mA/g and high capacity retention of 550 mAh/g after 150 cycles at a high discharge rate of 800 mA/g with excellent coulombic efficiency (≥95%). This suggests that the BC-S nanocomposite could be a promising cathode material for Li–S batteries.
    Nano Research 10/2015;
  • Nano Research 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Crystalline and nanostructured cobalt (CoFe2O4), nickel (NiFe2O4), zinc (ZnFe2O4) and manganese (MnFe2O4) spinel ferrites are synthesized with high yields, crystallinity and purity through an easy, quick, reproducible and low-temperature hydrothermal assisted route starting from an aqueous suspension of coprecipitated metal oxalates. The use of water as a reaction medium is a further advantage of the chosen protocol. Additionally, the zinc spinel is also prepared through an alternative route combining coprecipitation of oxalates from an aqueous solution with thermal decomposition under reflux conditions. The nanocrystalline powders are obtained as a pure crystalline phase already at the extremely low temperature of 75 °C and no further thermal treatment is needed. The structure and microstructure of the prepared materials is investigated by means of X-ray powder diffraction (XRPD), while X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and inductively coupled plasma–atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP–AES) analyses are used to gain information about the surface and bulk composition of the samples, respectively, confirming the expected stoichiometry. To investigate the effect of the synthesis protocol on the morphology of the obtained ferrites, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) observations are performed on selected samples. The magnetic properties of the cobalt and manganese spinels are also investigated using a superconducting quantum device magnetometer (SQUID) revealing hard and soft ferrimagnetic behavior, respectively.
    Nano Research 07/2014; 7(7):1027.
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    ABSTRACT: To improve the contact between platinum catalyst and titanium substrate, a layer of TiO2 nanotube arrays has been synthesized before depositing Pt nanoflowers by pulse electrodeposition. Dramatic improvements in electrocatalytic activity (3×) and stability (60×) for methanol oxidation were found, suggesting promising applications in direct methanol fuel cells. The 3× and 60× improvements persist for Pt/Pd catalysts used to overcome the CO poisoning problem.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Flexible lithium ion batteries (LIBs) have recently attracted increasing attention as they show unique promising advantages, such as flexibility, shape diversity, and light weight. Similar to conventional LIBs, flexible LIBs with long cycle life and high-rate performance are very important for applications of high performance flexible electronics. Herein, we report a three-dimensional (3D) web-like binderfree Li4Ti5O12 (LTO) anode assembled from numerous 1D nanowires exhibiting excellent cycling performance with high capacities of 153 and 115 mA·h·g−1 after 5,000 cycles at 2 C and 20 C, respectively, and excellent rate property with a capacity of 103 mA·h·g−1 even at a very high current rate of 80 C. Surprisingly, a flexible full battery assembled from the web-like LTO nanostructure and LiMn2O4 (LMO) nanorods exhibited a high capacity of 125 mA·h·g−1 at high current rate of 20 C, and showed excellent flexibility with little performance degradation even in seriously bent states.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Applications based on silicene as grown on substrates are of high interest toward actual utilization of this unique material. Here we explore, from first principles, the nature of carbon monoxide adsorption on semiconducting silicene nanoribbons and the resulting quantum conduction modulation with and without silver contacts for sensing applications. We find that quantum conduction is detectably modified by weak chemisorption of a single CO molecule on a pristine silicene nanoribbon. This modification can be attributed to the charge transfer from CO to the silicene nanoribbon and the deformation induced by the CO chemisorption. Moderate binding energies provide an optimal mix of high detectability and recoverability. With Ag contacts attached to a ∼1 nm silicene nanoribbon, the interface states mask the conductance modulations caused by CO adsorption, emphasizing length effects for sensor applications. The effects of atmospheric gases—nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water—as well as CO adsorption density and edge-dangling bond defects, on sensor functionality are also investigated. Our results reveal pristine silicene nanoribbons as a promising new sensing material with single molecule resolution.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: An atomic layer deposition (ALD) method has been employed to synthesize Fe3O4/graphene and Ni/graphene composites. The structure and microwave absorbing properties of the as-prepared composites are investigated. The surfaces of graphene are densely covered by Fe3O4 or Ni nanoparticles with a narrow size distribution, and the magnetic nanoparticles are well distributed on each graphene sheet without significant conglomeration or large vacancies. The coated graphene materials exhibit remarkably improved electromagnetic (EM) absorption properties compared to the pristine graphene. The optimal reflection loss (RL) reaches −46.4 dB at 15.6 GHz with a thickness of only 1.4 mm for the Fe3O4/graphene composites obtained by applying 100 cycles of Fe2O3 deposition followed by a hydrogen reduction. The enhanced absorption ability arises from the effective impedance matching, multiple interfacial polarization and increased magnetic loss from the added magnetic constituents. Moreover, compared with other recently reported materials, the composites have a lower filling ratio and smaller coating thickness resulting in significantly increased EM absorption properties. This demonstrates that nanoscale surface modification of magnetic particles on graphene by ALD is a very promising way to design lightweight and high-efficiency microwave absorbers.
    Nano Research 06/2014; 7(5):704.
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    ABSTRACT: High-temperature (150–220 °C) growth leads to the formation of some peptide nanotube/microtube (NT/MT) arrays but the NTs/MTs exhibit closed ends, irreversible phase modification and eliminations of piezoelectric and hydrophilic properties. Here we demonstrate the fabrication of unidirectionally aligned and stable diphenylalanine NT/MT arrays with centimeter scale area at room temperature by utilizing an external electric field. The interactions between the applied electric field and dipolar electric field on the NTs and surface positive charges are responsible for the formation. The unidirectionally aligned MT array exhibits a supercapacitance of 1,000 μF·cm−2 at a scanning rate of 50 mV·s−1; this is much larger than the values reported previously in peptide NT/MT arrays.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Gated transport measurements are the backbone of electrical characterization of nanoscale electronic devices. Scanning gate microscopy (SGM) is one such gating technique that adds crucial spatial information, accessing the localized properties of semiconductor devices. Nanowires represent a central device concept due to the potential to combine very different materials. However, SGM on semiconductor nanowires has been limited to a resolution in the 50-100 nm range. Here, we present a study by SGM of newly developed III–V semiconductor nanowire InAs/GaSb heterojunction Esaki tunnel diode devices under ultra-high vacuum. Sub-5 nm resolution is demonstrated at room temperature via use of quartz resonator atomic force microscopy sensors, with the capability to resolve InAs nanowire facets, the InAs/GaSb tunnel diode transition and nanoscale defects on the device. We demonstrate that such measurements can rapidly give important insight into the device properties via use of a simplified physical model, without the requirement for extensive calculation of the electrostatics of the system. Interestingly, by precise spatial correlation of the device electrical transport properties and surface structure we show the position and existence of a very abrupt (<10 nm) electrical transition across the InAs/GaSb junction despite the change in material composition occurring only over 30-50 nm. The direct and simultaneous link between nanostructure composition and electrical properties helps set important limits for the precision in structural control needed to achieve desired device performance.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: We present a novel, low-cost approach to fabricate flexible piezoelectric nanogenerators (NGs) consisting of ZnO nanowires (NWs) on carbon fibers and foldable Au-coated ZnO NWs on paper. By using such designed structure of the NGs, the radial ZnO NWs on a cylindrical fiber can be utilized fully and the electrical output of the NG is improved. The electrical output behavior of the NGs can be optionally controlled by increasing the fiber number, adjusting the strain rate and connection modes. For the single-fiber based NGs, the output voltage is 17 mV and the current density is about 0.09 μA·cm−2, and the electrical output is enhanced greatly compared to that of previous similar micro-fiber based NGs. Compared with the single-fiber based NGs, the output current of the multi-fiber based NGs made of 200 carbon fibers increased 100-fold. An output voltage of 18 mV and current of 35 nA are generated from the multi-fiber based NGs. The electrical energy generated by the NGs is enough to power a practical device. The developed novel NGs can be used for smart textile structures, wearable and self-powered nanodevices.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: A new method for growing silicon nanowires is presented. They were grown in an aqueous solution at a temperature of 85 °C under atmospheric pressure by using sodium methylsiliconate as a water-soluble silicon precursor. The structure, morphology, and composition of the as-grown nanowires were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry. It was also confirmed by X-ray powder diffraction and Raman spectroscopy that the silicon nanowire has a hexagonal structure. It was possible to grow the crystalline silicon nanowires at low temperature under atmospheric pressure because potassium iodide, which was used as a gold etchant, sufficiently increased the surface energy and reactivity of gold as a metal catalyst for the reaction of the Si precursor even at low temperature.
    Nano Research 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The ability to arbitrarily regulate semiconductor interfaces provides the most effective way to modulate the performance of optoelectronic devices. However, less work has been reported on piezo-modulated interface engineering in all-oxide systems. In this paper, an enhanced photoresponse of an all-oxide Cu2O/ZnO heterojunction was obtained by taking advantage of the piezotronic effect. The illumination density-dependent piezoelectric modulation ability was also comprehensively investigated. An 18.6% enhancement of photoresponse was achieved when applying a −0.88% compressive strain. Comparative experiments confirmed that this enhancement could be interpreted in terms of the band modification induced by interfacial piezoelectric polarization. The positive piezopotential generated at the ZnO side produces an increase in space charge region in Cu2O, thus providing an extra driving force to separate the excitons more efficiently under illumination. Our research provides a promising method to boost the performance of optoelectronics without altering the interface structure and could be extended to other metal oxide devices.
    Nano Research 06/2014;