Douglas R. MacFarlane

University of Wollongong, City of Greater Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

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Publications (317)1463.22 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Hierarchical porous plasmonic metamaterials consisting of periodic nanoholes with tunable diameter and uniformly distributed mesopores over the bulk are developed as a new class of 3D surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) substrates. This multiscale architecture not only facilitates efficient cascaded electromagnetic enhancement but also provides an enormous number of Raman-active binding sites, exhibiting excellent reproducibility and ultrasensitive detection of aromatic molecules down to 10−13 M.
    Advanced Materials 02/2015; 27(6):1090. · 15.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A protic ionic ethylenediamine liquid N,N-dimethyl-aminoethylammonium formate (DMEDAH formate) was evaluated for the removal of carbon dioxide from carbon dioxide and nitrogen mixed gas streams. This evaluation was conducted via a series of vapour–liquid equilibrium (VLE) experiments, wetted wall measurements and solvent contactor trials with the results compared to the performance of the industrial standard 30 wt% monoethanolamine (MEA). The VLE of the ionic liquid indicated that the sorption process included a chemical reaction component and is comparable to MEA. The mass transfer coefficient, calculated via the wetted wall column apparatus is an order of magnitude lower than MEA, which is likely due to the higher viscosity of the ionic liquid and its impact on carbon dioxide diffusivity. The solvent contactor trials indicated the solvent may be used in such an arrangement with good performance at low CO2 loadings, but would benefit from the use of alternative membrane materials.KeywordsIonic liquidCarbon dioxide captureVapour–liquid equilibriumWetted wall columnMembrane solvent contactor
    International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 01/2015; 32. · 3.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The synthesis of metal frameworks perforated with nanotunnels is a challenge because metals have high surface energies that favor low surface area structures; traditional liquid-crystal templating techniques cannot achieve the synthetic control required. We report a synthetic strategy to fabricate metal nanomaterials with highly ordered, tunable mesostructures in confined systems based on a new quasi-hard-templating liquid-crystals mechanism. The resulting platinum nanowires exhibit long range two-dimensional hexagonally ordered mesopore structures. In addition, single crystalline hexagonal mesoporous platinum nanowires with dominant {110} facets have been synthesized. Finally, we demonstrate that the mesostructures of metal nanomaterials can be tuned from hexagonal to lamellar mesostructures.
    Scientific Reports 12/2014; 4:7420. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    Jinpeng Han, Guiyin Xu, Hui Dou, Douglas R. MacFarlane
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    ABSTRACT: This research presents a simple and efficient method to synthesize porous nitrogen-doped carbon microspheres (PNCM) by the carbonization of microporous poly(terephthalaldehyde-pyrrole) organic frameworks (PtpOF). The common KOH activation process is used to tune the porous texture of the PNCM and produce an activated-PNCM (A-PNCM). The PNCM and A-PNCM with specific surface area of 921 and 1303 m2 g−1, respectively, are demonstrated as promising candidates for EDLCs. At a current density of 0.5 A g−1, the specific capacitances of the PNCM and A-PNCM are 248 and 282 F g−1, respectively. At the relatively high current density of 20 A g−1, the capacitance remaining is 95 and 154 F g−1, respectively. Capacity retention of the A-PNCM is more than 92 % after 10 000 charge/discharge cycles at a current density of 2 A g−1.
    Chemistry - A European Journal 12/2014; · 5.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: With the surge of interest in miniaturized implanted medical devices (IMDs), implantable power sources with small dimensions and biocompatibility are in high demand. Implanted battery/supercapacitor devices are commonly packaged within a case that occupies a large volume making miniaturization difficult. In this study, we demonstrate a polymer electrolyte enabled biocompatible magnesium-air battery device with a total thickness of approximately 300 µm. It consists of a biocompatible polypyrrole-para(toluene sulfonic acid) cathode and a bioresorbable magnesium alloy anode. The biocompatible electrolyte used is made of choline nitrate (ionic liquid) embedded in a biopolymer, chitosan. This polymer electrolyte is mechanically robust and offers a high ionic conductivity of 8.9×10-3 S cm-1. The assembled battery delivers a maximum volumetric power density of 3.9 W L-1, which is sufficient to drive some types of IMDs such as cardiac pacemakers or bio-monitoring systems. This miniaturized, biocompatible magnesium-air battery may pave a way to the future generation of implantable power sources.
    ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 11/2014; · 5.90 Impact Factor
  • Haitao Li, Xinyi Zhang, Douglas R. MacFarlane
    Advanced Energy Materials 11/2014; · 14.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: New findings supporting the stability of the superoxide ion, O2˙(-), in the presence of the phosphonium cation, [P6,6,6,14](+), are presented. Extended electrochemical investigations of a series of neat phosphonium-based ILs with different anions, including chloride, bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide and dicyanamide, demonstrate the chemical reversibility of the oxygen reduction process. Quantum chemistry calculations show a short intermolecular distance (r = 3.128 Å) between the superoxide ion and the phosphonium cation. NMR experiments have been performed to assess the degree of long term degradation of [P6,6,6,14](+), in the presence of superoxide and peroxide species, showing no chemically distinct degradation products of importance in reversible air cathodes.
    Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 10/2014; · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have studied both 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium (C2mim) and N-butyl-N-methylpyrrolidinium (C4mpyr) dicyanamide (dca) ionic liquids (ILs) containing 3 wt % H2O and 9 mol % Zn(dca)2 salt for their ability to support Zn0/2+ electrochemistry in the context of a rechargeable Zn battery. Despite the similarities of the two IL electrolyte systems [identical H2O and Zn(dca)2 contents], the system based on [C2mim] supported much higher current densities for Zn electrochemistry at greatly reduced overpotentials [−0.23 V vs. Zn pseudo-reference, 32 mA cm−2 (red) and 61 mA cm−2 (ox)] compared to the [C4mpyr]-based electrolyte [−0.84 V vs. Zn pseudo-reference, 8 mA cm−2 (red) and 15 mA cm−2 (ox)]. The overpotential for Zn deposition is reduced by 0.13 V on Zn metal surfaces compared to glassy carbon (GC), regardless of the electrolyte used. The morphologies of the Zn deposits on both GC and Zn surfaces were also studied. The Zn surfaces promote a deposition that displays a smooth morphology, resulting from an instantaneous nucleation mechanism demonstrated by chronoamperometric experiments. Finally, both [C2mim] and [C4mpyr] electrolytes were tested in symmetrical Zn|Zn cells, where it was determined that the [C2mim] system could sustain over 90 cycles at 0.1 mA cm−2, whereas the [C4mpyr] based system could only achieve 15 cycles at the more modest current density of 0.05 mA cm−2.
    ChemElectroChem. 09/2014;
  • Electrochimica Acta 09/2014; 140:309-313. · 4.09 Impact Factor
  • Mega Kar, Tristan J Simons, Maria Forsyth, Douglas R MacFarlane
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    ABSTRACT: Metal-air batteries are a well-established technology that can offer high energy densities, low cost and environmental responsibility. Despite these favourable characteristics and utilisation of oxygen as the cathode reactant, these devices have been limited to primary applications, due to a number of problems that occur when the cell is recharged, including electrolyte loss and poor efficiency. Overcoming these obstacles is essential to creating a rechargeable metal-air battery that can be utilised for efficiently capturing renewable energy. Despite the first metal-air battery being created over 100 years ago, the emergence of reactive metals such as lithium has reinvigorated interest in this field. However the reactivity of some of these metals has generated a number of different philosophies regarding the electrolyte of the metal-air battery. Whilst much is already known about the anode and cathode processes in aqueous and organic electrolytes, the shortcomings of these electrolytes (i.e. volatility, instability, flammability etc.) have led some of the metal-air battery community to study room temperature ionic liquids (RTILs) as non-volatile, highly stable electrolytes that have the potential to support rechargeable metal-air battery processes. In this perspective, we discuss how some of these initial studies have demonstrated the capabilities of RTILs as metal-air battery electrolytes. We will also show that much of the long-held mechanistic knowledge of the oxygen electrode processes might not be applicable in RTIL based electrolytes, allowing for creative new solutions to the traditional irreversibility of the oxygen reduction reaction. Our understanding of key factors such as the effect of catalyst chemistry and surface structure, proton activity and interfacial reactions is still in its infancy in these novel electrolytes. In this perspective we highlight the key areas that need the attention of electrochemists and battery engineers, in order to progress the understanding of the physical and electrochemical processes in RTILs as electrolytes for the various forms of rechargeable metal-air batteries.
    Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 08/2014; · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Using permeation through a model membrane in a Franz diffusion cell, we have demonstrated that acidic and basic active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in deep eutectic ‘liquid co-crystal’ form can be held tightly together, even in solution, via strong hydrogen bonds or partially ionized interactions, providing simultaneous transport at rates much higher than solutions of their corresponding, commercially available crystalline salts, albeit at rates that are lower than the neutral forms of the individual molecules. It was also shown that the deep eutectic APIs do not have to be premade, but hydrogen-bonded complexes can be formed in situ by mixing the corresponding API–solvent solutions. To understand the behavior, we have extensively studied a range of nonstoichiometric mixtures of lidocaine and ibuprofen spectroscopically and via membrane transport. The data demonstrates the nature of the interactions between the acid and base and provides a route to tune the rate of membrane transport.
    Chemical Science 07/2014; 5(9). · 8.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The fate of [MnIII/IV2(μ-O)2(terpy)2(H2O)2]3+ (1) under conditions typically applied to test its ability to catalyze water oxidation was studied by X-ray absorption spectroscopy and UV/Vis spectrophotometry by using [MnIII/IV2(μ-O)2(bipy)4]3+(2) and Mn2+ as controls (terpy=2,2′:6′,2“-terpyridine, bipy=2,2′-bipyridine). The sample matrix, pH and choice of oxidizing agent were found to have a significant effect on the species formed under catalytic conditions. At low range pH values (4–6), homogeneous catalysis testing in oxone implied that 1 remains intact, whereas in clay intercalate there is strong evidence that 1 breaks down to a birnessite-like phase. In homogeneous solutions at higher pH, the results are consistent with the same birnessite-like structure identified in the clay intercalate. The use of the molecular complexes, as a source of manganese instead of simple MnII salts, was found to have the effect of slowing down oxide formation and particle aggregation in solution. The original analytical results that implied the systems are molecular are discussed in the context of these new observations.
    ChemCatChem 06/2014; · 5.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The physicochemical properties of a range of NaNTf2 (or NaTFSI) salt concentrations in N-propyl-N-methylpyrrolidinium bis(fluorosulfonyl)imide (or C3mpyrFSI) ionic liquid were investigated by DSC, conductivity, cyclic voltammetry and diffusivity studies. Cyclic voltammetry indicated a stable sodium plating behavior with a current of 5 mA cm(-2) at 25 °C to 20 mA cm(-2) at 100 °C, along with high reversibility identifying this electrolyte as a possible candidate for sodium-ion or sodium metal battery applications. (23)Na NMR chemical shifts and spectral linewidths (FWHM) indicate a complex coordination of the Na(+) ion which is dependent on both temperature and salt concentration with an apparently stronger coordination to the NTf2 anion upon increasing the NaNTf2 concentration. Temperature dependent PFG-NMR diffusion measurements show that both FSI and NTf2 have a comparable behaviour although the smaller FSI anion is more diffusive.
    Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 05/2014; · 4.20 Impact Factor
  • Mega Kar, Bjorn Winther-Jensen, Maria Forsyth, Douglas R Macfarlane
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    ABSTRACT: The coordination of zinc ions by tetraglyme has been investigated here to support the development of novel electrolytes for rechargeable zinc batteries. Zn(2+) reduction is electrochemically reversible from tetraglyme. The spectroscopic data, molar conductivity and thermal behavior as a function of zinc composition, between mole ratios [80 : 20] and [50 : 50] [tetraglyme : zinc chloride], all suggest that strong interactions take place between chloro-zinc complexes and tetraglyme. Varying the concentration of zinc chloride produces a range of zinc-chloro species (ZnClx)(2-x) in solution, which hinder full interaction between the zinc ion and tetraglyme. Both the [70 : 30] and [50 : 50] mixtures are promising electrolyte candidates for reversible zinc batteries, such as the zinc-air device.
    Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 04/2014; · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    Jinpeng Han, Guiyin Xu, Bing Ding, Jin Pan, Hui Dou, Douglas R. MacFarlane
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    ABSTRACT: Porous nitrogen-doped hollow carbon spheres (PNHCS) had been prepared by pyrolysis of hollow polyaniline spheres (HPS), which were synthesized by the use of sulfonated polystyrene spheres (SPS) as a hard template. PNHCS have a specific surface area of 213 m2 g−1 and a pore volume of 0.24 cm3 g−1. At a current density of 0.5 A g−1, the specific capacitance of the PNHCS prepared is ca. 213 F g−1. The capacity retention after 5000 charge/discharge cycles at a current density of 1 A g−1 is more than 91%. The enhanced electrochemical performance can be attributed to the unique carbon nanostructure and nitrogen-doping of the PNHCS electrodes. The hollow macro-structure plays the role of an “ion-buffering” reservoir. The micropores of the PNHCS enlarge the specific surface area, while the mesopores offer larger channels for liquid electrolyte penetration. Nitrogen groups in the PNHCS not only improve the wettability of the carbon surface, but also enhance the capacitance by addition of a pseudocapacitive redox process.
    J. Mater. Chem. A. 03/2014; 2(15).
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    ABSTRACT: Knowledge of the proton transport behaviour in electrolyte materials is crucial for designing and developing novel solid electrolytes for electrochemical device applications such as fuel cells or batteries. In the present work, high proton conductivity (approximately 10-3 S cm-1) was observed in the triflic acid (HTf) containing guanidinium triflate (GTf) composites. The proton transport mechanism in the composite was elucidated by comparing the diffusion coefficients obtained from NMR and conductivity measurements. Several orders of magnitude enhancement of conductivity is observed upon addition of HTf to the organic solid, and this appears to follow percolation behaviour with a percolation threshold of approximately 2% HTf. The data support a structural diffusion (or Grotthuss) mechanism of proton transport with a calculated Haven ratio significantly less than unity. 13C SUPER and 14N overtone NMR experiments were used to study the mobility and symmetry of the triflate anion and guanidinium cation respectively at a molecular level. The former experiment shows that the CF3 group in the anion displays fast and isotropic motion at room temperature. In contrast to the high mobility of the anion group, the 14N overtone experiments indicate that the guanidinium cation is static in both the pure and the acid-containing GTf samples at room temperature. It is anticipated that these solid-state NMR techniques may be also applied to other organic solid state electrolyte materials to achieve a better understanding of their transport mechanisms and molecular dynamics.
    Journal of Materials Chemistry A. 01/2014; 2(3):681-691.
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    ABSTRACT: Ionic liquids offer a unique suite of properties that make them important candidates for a number of energy related applications. Cation-anion combinations that exhibit low volatility coupled with high electrochemical and thermal stability, as well as ionic conductivity, create the possibility of designing ideal electrolytes for batteries, super-capacitors, actuators, dye sensitised solar cells and thermo-electrochemical cells. In the field of water splitting to produce hydrogen they have been used to synthesize some of the best performing water oxidation catalysts and some members of the protic ionic liquid family co-catalyse an unusual, very high energy efficiency water oxidation process. As fuel cell electrolytes, the high proton conductivity of some of the protic ionic liquid family offers the potential of fuel cells operating in the optimum temperature region above 100 °C. Beyond electrochemical applications, the low vapour pressure of these liquids, along with their ability to offer tuneable functionality, also makes them ideal as CO2 absorbents for post-combustion CO2 capture. Similarly, the tuneable phase properties of the many members of this large family of salts are also allowing the creation of phase-change thermal energy storage materials having melting points tuned to the application. This perspective article provides an overview of these developing energy related applications of ionic liquids and offers some thoughts on the emerging challenges and opportunities.
    Energy & Environmental Science 01/2014; 7(1):232. · 15.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report the morphogenesis and self-assembly of bismutite nanocrystals with fully tunable morphologies from square plates, octagonal sheets, and round disks into three-dimensional hierarchical nanostructures. The results show that the nucleation, growth and self-assembly of bismutite nanocrystals strongly depend on the synergistic effect between hydroxide and citrate ions. The three-dimensional hierarchical nanostructures are formed through an oriented-attachment of bismutite nanocrystals along the 〈001〉 directions. The bismutite hierarchical nanostructures can be utilized for efficient and selective adsorption and separation. A novel surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy platform based on a bismutite/gold nanoparticles core–shell structure has been developed for ultrasensitive detection of aromatic molecules with a detection limit down to 1 nM.
    Journal of Materials Chemistry 01/2014; 2(7):2275-2282. · 6.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in the presence of proton donors of similar proton activities (water, methanol and ethylene glycol), as well as weak and strong acids has been studied in a phosphonium-based IL, [P66614][Cl].[P66614][Cl]/ethylene glycol mixtures showed better ORR performance than mixtures containing water or methanol in terms of onset potential and current density. This enhancement in performance similar to that produced by weak acids, is attributed to the self-stabilization of ethylene glycol after proton removal; this has been corroborated by calculation of the hydrogen-bond donating ability. Interestingly under these conditions, the oxygen reduction reaction on a glassy carbon electrode follows an overall 4-electron pathway (i.e., two 2-electron processes) which is of importance in the performance of air cathodes in electrochemical devices.
    Electrochemistry Communications 01/2014; 38:24–27. · 4.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Vitrification of sugar-based solutions plays an important role incryopreservation, lyophilization, and the emerging field of anhydrous preservation. An understanding of the glass transitioncharacteristics of such formulations is essential for determiningan appropriate storage temperature to ensure an extended shelf life of vitrified products. To better understand the effect of saltson the glass transition temperature (Tg) ofglass-forming sugars, we investigated severaldata-fitting models (Fox, Gordon-Taylor and Kwei) for sugar-saltformulations using data from the literature, as well as new data generated on blends of trehalose and choline dihydrogen phosphate (CDHP). CDHP has recently been shown to have promise as a stabilizing agent for proteins and DNA. The Kwei equation, which has a specific parameter characterizing intermolecular interactions, providesgood fits to the Tg data for sugar-salt blends, and complements other commonly used models that are frequently used to model Tg data.
    Cryobiology 12/2013; · 1.64 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

8k Citations
1,463.22 Total Impact Points


  • 2014
    • University of Wollongong
      • ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science
      City of Greater Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia
  • 1986–2014
    • Monash University (Australia)
      • • Department of Materials Engineering, Clayton
      • • School of Chemistry, Clayton
      • • Centre for Green Chemistry
      Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • 2013
    • University of Leipzig
      • Wilhelm Ostwald Institut of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
      Leipzig, Saxony, Germany
  • 2009–2013
    • University of North Carolina at Charlotte
      • Department of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Science
      Charlotte, NC, United States
  • 2008–2013
    • Dublin City University
      • • School of Chemical Sciences
      • • Biomedical Diagnostics Institute
      Dublin, L, Ireland
    • University of Leicester
      • Department of Chemistry
      Leiscester, England, United Kingdom
  • 2012
    • Deakin University
      • Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM)
      Geelong, Victoria, Australia
  • 2004–2012
    • Monash University (Malaysia)
      Labuan, Labuan, Malaysia
  • 2007–2011
    • Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology
      • Division of Biotechnology and Life Science
      Edo, Tōkyō, Japan