NSTI BioNano 2010

Invariant Component Nano-growth (ICON)

S.R. Hall
University of Bristol, UK

Keywords: biopolymer, synthesis, superconductors, piezoelectrics, nanowires


Whilst many simple metals and binary compounds can be synthesized as technologically useful nanowires, more complex compounds remain steadfastly immutable. These compounds include high-Tc superconductors, giant magnetoresistance materials and piezoelectric crystals. The ability to synthesize these as single crystal nanowires would greatly facilitate their incorporation in the next generation of nano-devices and may possibly reveal new chemical and physical behaviour by having highly anisotropic form. Nanowires of these most useful of materials are unable to be made by the common methods, e.g. vapour-liquid-solid growth, chemical synthesis, solvothermal and template directed crystallization, due to a multitude of phase separations, side-reactions and lack of suitable catalysts. In order to address this, we propose a new conceptual approach to the synthesis of nanowires in complex systems. By designing the synthesis around a component which remains invariant throughout the experiment and which reacts only when the desired product is the favoured reaction, we have created a new paradigm in designer nanowire synthesis.
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