Maria and Ana are spending this week at the LISE in Paris, performing electrochemical studies on electrospun carbon mats for energy storage applications using quartz microbalance, in collaboration with Dr. Ozlem Sel. Below some pictures of us doing some work and also enjoying great food and company.
Welcome Carlos! Carlos has just joined our group to conduct his PhD project. He will be working on hybrid spin selective chiral systems for electrocatalysis and photoelectrocatalysis applications. You can find more about him here.
We held the MRI Christmas Symposium on the 12th December 2018. It was a great success, with talks from different disciplines from Dentistry to Materials Science, Engineering, Chemistry and Physics. We also had a very interesting poster session, with plenty of fruitful discussions. Thanks to all that contributed to an amazing event and congratulations to the winners for the best talks and posters! Well done!
Arun has joined our group as a postdoc on oxygen bifunctional electrocatalysts. You can find more info about Arun here.
Ana visited NPU in Xi’an where she attended a workshop on thermoelectrics and met with Prof. Li, a collaborator on materials for photocatalysis applications. Above some pictures of Ana and Petra Szilagyi, in Xi’an old city and waiting for some dumplings.
Thank you all for a great weekend at the Science Museum of London at the We are Engineers Family Festival, last weekend, sharing with everyone the wonders of batteries 🙂
ACS Omega, 2018, 3 (10), pp 13227–13238
ABSTRACT. Because of its electrically conducting properties combined with excellent thermal stability and transparency throughout the visible spectrum, tin oxide (SnO2) is extremely attractive as a transparent conducting material for applications in low-emission window coatings and solar cells, as well as in lithium-ion batteries and gas sensors. It is also an important catalyst and catalyst support for oxidation reactions. Here, we describe a novel nonaqueous sol–gel synthesis approach to produce tin oxide nanoparticles (NPs) with a low NP size dispersion. The success of this method lies in the nonhydrolytic pathway that involves the reaction between tin chloride and an oxygen donor, 1-hexanol, without the need for a surfactant or subsequent thermal treatment. This one-pot procedure is carried out at relatively low temperatures in the 160–260 °C range, compatible with coating processes on flexible plastic supports. The NP size distribution, shape, and dislocation density were studied by powder X-ray powder diffraction analyzed using the method of whole powder pattern modeling, as well as high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. The SnO2 NPs were determined to have particle sizes between 3.4 and 7.7 nm. The reaction products were characterized using liquid-state 13C and 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) that confirmed the formation of dihexyl ether and 1-chlorohexane. The NPs were studied by a combination of 13C, 1H, and 119Sn solid-state NMR as well as Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) and Raman spectroscopy. The 13C SSNMR, FTIR, and Raman data showed the presence of organic species derived from the 1-hexanol reactant remaining within the samples. The optical absorption, studied using UV–visible spectroscopy, indicated that the band gap (Eg) shifted systematically to lower energy with decreasing NP sizes. This unusual result could be due to mechanical strains present within the smallest NPs perhaps associated with the organic ligands decorating the NP surface. As the size increased, we observed a correlation with an increased density of screw dislocations present within the NPs that could indicate relaxation of the stress. We suggest that this could provide a useful method for band gap control within SnO2 NPs in the absence of chemical dopants.
Ana participated in the N.I.C.E. Conference, held during the 14th to 17th October 2018 in Nice. She gave a talk on biomass-derived electrodes for supercapacitor applications and redox flow batteries.
Very happy to find out that our Newton Institutional Link collaborative project with Magda Titirici, from QMUL and Diana Lopez from Universidad de Antioquia on “Colombian Waste Biomass to Advanced Energy Materials” has been shortlisted for the Newton Prize, British Council.