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Nanomaterials, Volume 8, Issue 1 (January 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Thermally Stimulated Currents (TSCs) performed with nanocrystalline TiO2 films in a wide [...] Read more.
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Editorial

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Open AccessFeature PaperEditorial Editorial Announcement
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010012
Received: 6 December 2017 / Revised: 6 December 2017 / Accepted: 7 December 2017 / Published: 31 December 2017
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Open AccessEditorial Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Nanomaterials in 2017
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010039
Received: 12 January 2018 / Accepted: 12 January 2018 / Published: 13 January 2018
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Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Nanomaterials maintains high quality standards for its published papers[...] Full article

Research

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Open AccessArticle A New Label-Free Technique for Analysing Evaporation Induced Self-Assembly of Viral Nanoparticles Based on Enhanced Dark-Field Optical Imaging
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010001
Received: 22 October 2017 / Revised: 29 November 2017 / Accepted: 12 December 2017 / Published: 22 December 2017
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Abstract
Nanoparticle self-assembly is a complex phenomenon, the control of which is complicated by the lack of appropriate tools and techniques for monitoring the phenomenon with adequate resolution in real-time. In this work, a label-free technique based on dark-field microscopy was developed to investigate
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Nanoparticle self-assembly is a complex phenomenon, the control of which is complicated by the lack of appropriate tools and techniques for monitoring the phenomenon with adequate resolution in real-time. In this work, a label-free technique based on dark-field microscopy was developed to investigate the self-assembly of nanoparticles. A bio-nanoparticle with complex shape (T4 bacteriophage) that self-assembles on glass substrates upon drying was developed. The fluid flow regime during the drying process, as well as the final self-assembled structures, were studied using dark-field microscopy, while phage diffusion was analysed by tracking of the phage nanoparticles in the bulk solutions. The concentrations of T4 phage nanoparticles and salt ions were identified as the main parameters influencing the fluid flow, particle motion and, consequently, the resulting self-assembled structure. This work demonstrates the utility of enhanced dark-field microscopy as a label-free technique for the observation of drying-induced self-assembly of bacteriophage T4. This technique provides the ability to track the nano-sized particles in different matrices and serves as a strong tool for monitoring self-assembled structures and bottom-up assembly of nano-sized building blocks in real-time. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Arginylglycylaspartic Acid-Surface-Functionalized Doxorubicin-Loaded Lipid-Core Nanocapsules as a Strategy to Target Alpha(V) Beta(3) Integrin Expressed on Tumor Cells
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010002
Received: 24 November 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 16 December 2017 / Published: 22 December 2017
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Abstract
Doxorubicin (Dox) clinical use is limited by dose-related cardiomyopathy, becoming more prevalent with increasing cumulative doses. Previously, we developed Dox-loaded lipid-core nanocapsules (Dox-LNC) and, in this study, we hypothesized that self-assembling and interfacial reactions could be used to obtain arginylglycylaspartic acid (RGD)-surface-functionalized-Dox-LNC, which
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Doxorubicin (Dox) clinical use is limited by dose-related cardiomyopathy, becoming more prevalent with increasing cumulative doses. Previously, we developed Dox-loaded lipid-core nanocapsules (Dox-LNC) and, in this study, we hypothesized that self-assembling and interfacial reactions could be used to obtain arginylglycylaspartic acid (RGD)-surface-functionalized-Dox-LNC, which could target tumoral cells overexpressing αvβ3 integrin. Human breast adenocarcinoma cell line (MCF-7) and human glioblastoma astrocytoma (U87MG) expressing different levels of αvβ3 integrin were studied. RGD-functionalized Dox-LNC were prepared with Dox at 100 and 500 mg·mL−1 (RGD-MCMN (Dox100) and RGD-MCMN (Dox500)). Blank formulation (RGD-MCMN) had z-average diameter of 162 ± 6 nm, polydispersity index of 0.11 ± 0.04, zeta potential of +13.2 ± 1.9 mV and (6.2 ± 1.1) × 1011 particles mL−1, while RGD-MCMN (Dox100) and RGD-MCMN (Dox500) showed respectively 146 ± 20 and 215 ± 25 nm, 0.10 ± 0.01 and 0.09 ± 0.03, +13.8 ± 2.3 and +16.4 ± 1.5 mV and (6.9 ± 0.6) × 1011 and (6.1 ± 1.0) × 1011 particles mL−1. RGD complexation was 7.73 × 104 molecules per nanocapsule and Dox loading were 1.51 × 104 and 7.64 × 104 molecules per nanocapsule, respectively. RGD-functionalized nanocapsules had an improved uptake capacity by U87MG cells. Pareto chart showed that the cell viability was mainly affected by the Dox concentration and the period of treatment in both MCF-7 and U87MG. The influence of RGD-functionalization on cell viability was a determinant factor exclusively to U87MG. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle A Novel Magnetic Actuation Scheme to Disaggregate Nanoparticles and Enhance Passage across the Blood–Brain Barrier
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010003
Received: 16 November 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 16 December 2017 / Published: 22 December 2017
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Abstract
The blood–brain barrier (BBB) hinders drug delivery to the brain. Despite various efforts to develop preprogramed actuation schemes for magnetic drug delivery, the unmodeled aggregation phenomenon limits drug delivery performance. This paper proposes a novel scheme with an aggregation model for a feed-forward
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The blood–brain barrier (BBB) hinders drug delivery to the brain. Despite various efforts to develop preprogramed actuation schemes for magnetic drug delivery, the unmodeled aggregation phenomenon limits drug delivery performance. This paper proposes a novel scheme with an aggregation model for a feed-forward magnetic actuation design. A simulation platform for aggregated particle delivery is developed and an actuation scheme is proposed to deliver aggregated magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) using a discontinuous asymmetrical magnetic actuation. The experimental results with a Y-shaped channel indicated the success of the proposed scheme in steering and disaggregation. The delivery performance of the developed scheme was examined using a realistic, three-dimensional (3D) vessel simulation. Furthermore, the proposed scheme enhanced the transport and uptake of MNPs across the BBB in mice. The scheme presented here facilitates the passage of particles across the BBB to the brain using an electromagnetic actuation scheme. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Magnetic Nanoparticles in Biological Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Highly Efficient, Rapid, and Simultaneous Removal of Cationic Dyes from Aqueous Solution Using Monodispersed Mesoporous Silica Nanoparticles as the Adsorbent
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010004
Received: 3 November 2017 / Revised: 3 December 2017 / Accepted: 19 December 2017 / Published: 23 December 2017
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Abstract
In this work, a highly efficient and rapid method for simultaneously removing cationic dyes from aqueous solutions was developed by using monodispersed mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) as the adsorbents. The MSNs were prepared by a facile one-pot method and characterized by scanning electron
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In this work, a highly efficient and rapid method for simultaneously removing cationic dyes from aqueous solutions was developed by using monodispersed mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) as the adsorbents. The MSNs were prepared by a facile one-pot method and characterized by scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller. Experimental results demonstrated that the as-prepared MSNs possessed a large specific surface area (about 585 m2/g), uniform particle size (about 30 nm), large pore volume (1.175 cm3/g), and narrow pore size distribution (1.68 nm). The materials showed highly efficient and rapid adsorption properties for cationic dyes including rhodamine B, methylene blue, methyl violet, malachite green, and basic fuchsin. Under the optimized conditions, the maximum adsorption capacities for the above mentioned cationic dyes were in the range of 14.70 mg/g to 34.23 mg/g, which could be achieved within 2 to 6 min. The probable adsorption mechanism of MSNs for adsorption of cationic dyes is proposed. It could be considered that the adsorption is mainly controlled by electrostatic interactions and hydrogen bonding between the cationic dyes and MSNs. As a low-cost, biocompatible, and environmentally friendly material, MSNs have a potential application in wastewater treatment for removing some environmental cationic contaminants. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Improvement of Image Sticking in Liquid Crystal Display Doped with γ-Fe2O3 Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010005
Received: 25 October 2017 / Revised: 12 December 2017 / Accepted: 19 December 2017 / Published: 24 December 2017
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Abstract
Image sticking in thin film transistor-liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD) is related to the dielectric property of liquid crystal (LC) material. Low threshold value TFT LC materials have a weak stability and the free ions in them will be increased because of their own
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Image sticking in thin film transistor-liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD) is related to the dielectric property of liquid crystal (LC) material. Low threshold value TFT LC materials have a weak stability and the free ions in them will be increased because of their own decomposition. In this study, the property of TFT LC material MAT-09-1284 doped with γ-Fe2O3 nanoparticles was investigated. The capacitances of parallel-aligned nematic LC cells and vertically aligned nematic LC cells with different doping concentrations were measured at different temperatures and frequencies. The dielectric constants perpendicular and parallel to long axis of the LC molecules ε and ε//, as well as the dielectric anisotropy Δε, were obtained. The dynamic responses and the direct current threshold voltages in parallel-aligned nematic LC cells for different doping concentrations were also measured. Although the dielectric anisotropy Δε decreased gradually with increasing temperature and frequency at the certain frequency and temperature in LC state for each concentration, the doping concentration of γ-Fe2O3 nanoparticles less than or equal to 0.145 wt % should be selected for maintaining dynamic response and decreasing free ions. This study has some guiding significance for improving the image sticking in TFT-LCD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials in Liquid Crystals)
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Open AccessArticle Antibacterial, Antiproliferative, and Immunomodulatory Activity of Silver Nanoparticles Synthesized with Fucans from the Alga Dictyota mertensii
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010006
Received: 15 October 2017 / Revised: 15 December 2017 / Accepted: 18 December 2017 / Published: 25 December 2017
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Abstract
In this study, we aimed to synthesize silver nanoparticles containing fucans from Dictyota mertensii (Martius) Kützing using an environmentally friendly method and to characterize their structure as well as antiproliferative, immunomodulatory, and antibacterial effects. Fucan-coated silver nanoparticles (FN) were characterized by Fourier-transform infrared
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In this study, we aimed to synthesize silver nanoparticles containing fucans from Dictyota mertensii (Martius) Kützing using an environmentally friendly method and to characterize their structure as well as antiproliferative, immunomodulatory, and antibacterial effects. Fucan-coated silver nanoparticles (FN) were characterized by Fourier-transform infrared analysis, dynamic light scattering, zeta potential, atomic force microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and inductively coupled plasma emission spectrometry. They were evaluated for their effect on cell viability, minimum inhibitory bactericidal concentration, and release of nitric oxide and cytokines. The FN were successfully synthesized using an environmentally friendly method. They were size-stable for 16 months, of a spherical shape, negative charge (−19.1 mV), and an average size of 103.3 ± 43 nm. They were able to inhibit the proliferation of the melanoma tumor cell line B16F10 (60%). In addition, they had immunomodulatory properties: they caused an up to 7000-fold increase in the release of nitric oxide and cytokines (IL-10; IL-6 and TNF-α) up to 7000 times. In addition, the FN showed inhibitory effect on Gram-positive and -negative bacteria, with MIC values of 50 µg/mL. Overall, the data showed that FN are nanoparticles with the potential to be used as antitumor, immunomodulatory, and antibacterial agents. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Prevention of Synaptic Alterations and Neurotoxic Effects of PAMAM Dendrimers by Surface Functionalization
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010007
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 25 December 2017
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Abstract
One of the most studied nanocarriers for drug delivery are polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers. However, the alterations produced by PAMAM dendrimers in neuronal function have not been thoroughly investigated, and important aspects such as effects on synaptic transmission remain unexplored. We focused on the
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One of the most studied nanocarriers for drug delivery are polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers. However, the alterations produced by PAMAM dendrimers in neuronal function have not been thoroughly investigated, and important aspects such as effects on synaptic transmission remain unexplored. We focused on the neuronal activity disruption induced by dendrimers and the possibility to prevent these effects by surface chemical modifications. Therefore, we studied the effects of fourth generation PAMAM with unmodified positively charged surface (G4) in hippocampal neurons, and compared the results with dendrimers functionalized in 25% of their surface groups with folate (PFO25) and polyethylene glycol (PPEG25). G4 dendrimers significantly reduced cell viability at 1 µM, which was attenuated by both chemical modifications, PPEG25 being the less cytotoxic. Patch clamp recordings demonstrated that G4 induced a 7.5-fold increment in capacitive currents as a measure of membrane permeability. Moreover, treatment with this dendrimer increased intracellular Ca2+ by 8-fold with a complete disruption of transients pattern, having as consequence that G4 treatment increased the synaptic vesicle release and frequency of synaptic events by 2.4- and 3-fold, respectively. PFO25 and PPEG25 treatments did not alter membrane permeability, total Ca2+ intake, synaptic vesicle release or synaptic activity frequency. These results demonstrate that cationic G4 dendrimers have neurotoxic effects and induce alterations in normal synaptic activity, which are generated by the augmentation of membrane permeability and a subsequent intracellular Ca2+ increase. Interestingly, these toxic effects and synaptic alterations are prevented by the modification of 25% of PAMAM surface with either folate or polyethylene glycol. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanosafety 2017)
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Open AccessArticle Colloidal Synthesis and Thermoelectric Properties of CuFeSe2 Nanocrystals
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010008
Received: 17 November 2017 / Revised: 9 December 2017 / Accepted: 24 December 2017 / Published: 26 December 2017
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Abstract
Copper-based chalcogenides that contain abundant, low-cost and environmentally-friendly elements, are excellent materials for numerous energy conversion applications, such as photocatalysis, photovoltaics, photoelectricity and thermoelectrics (TE). Here, we present a high-yield and upscalable colloidal synthesis route for the production of monodisperse ternary I-III-VI2
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Copper-based chalcogenides that contain abundant, low-cost and environmentally-friendly elements, are excellent materials for numerous energy conversion applications, such as photocatalysis, photovoltaics, photoelectricity and thermoelectrics (TE). Here, we present a high-yield and upscalable colloidal synthesis route for the production of monodisperse ternary I-III-VI2 chalcogenides nanocrystals (NCs), particularly stannite CuFeSe2, with uniform shape and narrow size distributions by using selenium powder as the anion precursor and CuCl2·2H2O and FeCl3 as the cationic precursors. The composition, the state of valence, size and morphology of the CuFeSe2 materials were examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), scanning electron microscope (SEM), transmission electron microscope (TEM) and high resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM), respectively. Furthermore, the TE properties characterization of these dense nanomaterials compacted from monodisperse CuFeSe2 NCs by hot press at 623 K were preliminarily studied after ligand removal by means of hydrazine and hexane solution. The TE performances of the sintered CuFeSe2 pellets were characterized in the temperature range from room temperature to 653 K. Finally, the dimensionless TE figure of merit (ZT) of this Earth-abundant and intrinsic p-type CuFeSe2 NCs is significantly increased to 0.22 at 653 K in this work, which is demonstrated to show a promising TE materialand makes it a possible p-type candidate for medium-temperature TE applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thermoelectric Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle Novel Weed-Extracted Silver Nanoparticles and Their Antibacterial Appraisal against a Rare Bacterium from River and Sewage Treatment Plan
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010009
Received: 28 November 2017 / Revised: 12 December 2017 / Accepted: 15 December 2017 / Published: 26 December 2017
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Abstract
This is the first investigation to demonstrate the use of biochemical contents present within Cyperus rotundus, Eleusin indica, Euphorbia hirta, Melastoma malabathricum, Clidemia hirta and Pachyrhizus erosus extracts for the reduction of silver ion to silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) form.
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This is the first investigation to demonstrate the use of biochemical contents present within Cyperus rotundus, Eleusin indica, Euphorbia hirta, Melastoma malabathricum, Clidemia hirta and Pachyrhizus erosus extracts for the reduction of silver ion to silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) form. In addition, the antibacterial capability of the synthesized AgNPs and plant extracts alone against a rare bacterium, Chromobacterium haemolyticum (C. haemolyticum), was examined. Moreover, ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy (UV-vis), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) and inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICPOES) of the synthesized AgNPs were characterized. The smallest AgNPs can be produced when Cyperus rotundus extracts were utilized. In addition, this study has found that the synthesis efficiencies using all plant extracts are in the range of 72% to 91% with the highest percentage achieved when Eleusin indica extract was employed. All synthesized AgNPs have antibacterial capability against all examined bacteria depending on their size and bacteria types. Interestingly, Melastoma malabathricum and Clidemia hirta extracts have demonstrated an antibacterial ability against C. haemolyticum. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Comparative Evaluation of U.S. Brand and Generic Intravenous Sodium Ferric Gluconate Complex in Sucrose Injection: Biodistribution after Intravenous Dosing in Rats
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010010
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 23 December 2017 / Published: 28 December 2017
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Abstract
Relative biodistribution of FDA-approved innovator and generic sodium ferric gluconate (SFG) drug products was investigated to identify differences in tissue distribution of iron after intravenous dosing to rats. Three equal cohorts of 42 male Sprague-Dawley rats were created with each cohort receiving one
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Relative biodistribution of FDA-approved innovator and generic sodium ferric gluconate (SFG) drug products was investigated to identify differences in tissue distribution of iron after intravenous dosing to rats. Three equal cohorts of 42 male Sprague-Dawley rats were created with each cohort receiving one of three treatments: (1) the innovator SFG product dosed intravenously at a concentration of 40 mg/kg; (2) the generic SFG product dosed intravenously at a concentration of 40 mg/kg; (3) saline dosed intravenously at equivalent volume to SFG products. Sampling time points were 15 min, 1 h, 8 h, 1 week, two weeks, four weeks, and six weeks post-treatment. Six rats from each group were sacrificed at each time point. Serum, femoral bone marrow, lungs, brain, heart, kidneys, liver, and spleen were harvested and evaluated for total iron concentration by ICP-MS. The ICP-MS analytical method was validated with linearity, range, accuracy, and precision. Results were determined for mean iron concentrations (µg/g) and mean total iron (whole tissue) content (µg/tissue) for each tissue of all groups at each time point. A percent of total distribution to each tissue was calculated for both products. At any given time point, the overall percent iron concentration distribution did not vary between the two SFG drugs by more than 7% in any tissue. Overall, this study demonstrated similar tissue biodistribution for the two SFG products in the examined tissues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle Thermally Stimulated Currents in Nanocrystalline Titania
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010013
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 12 December 2017 / Accepted: 12 December 2017 / Published: 5 January 2018
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Abstract
A thorough study on the distribution of defect-related active energy levels has been performed on nanocrystalline TiO2. Films have been deposited on thick-alumina printed circuit boards equipped with electrical contacts, heater and temperature sensors, to carry out a detailed thermally stimulated
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A thorough study on the distribution of defect-related active energy levels has been performed on nanocrystalline TiO2. Films have been deposited on thick-alumina printed circuit boards equipped with electrical contacts, heater and temperature sensors, to carry out a detailed thermally stimulated currents analysis on a wide temperature range (5–630 K), in view to evidence contributions from shallow to deep energy levels within the gap. Data have been processed by numerically modelling electrical transport. The model considers both free and hopping contribution to conduction, a density of states characterized by an exponential tail of localized states below the conduction band and the convolution of standard Thermally Stimulated Currents (TSC) emissions with gaussian distributions to take into account the variability in energy due to local perturbations in the highly disordered network. Results show that in the low temperature range, up to 200 K, hopping within the exponential band tail represents the main contribution to electrical conduction. Above room temperature, electrical conduction is dominated by free carriers contribution and by emissions from deep energy levels, with a defect density ranging within 1014–1018 cm−3, associated with physio- and chemi-sorbed water vapour, OH groups and to oxygen vacancies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ZnO and TiO2 Based Nanostructures)
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Open AccessArticle Gate Tunable Transport in Graphene/MoS2/(Cr/Au) Vertical Field-Effect Transistors
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010014
Received: 11 November 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 28 December 2017
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Abstract
Two-dimensional materials based vertical field-effect transistors have been widely studied due to their useful applications in industry. In the present study, we fabricate graphene/MoS2/(Cr/Au) vertical transistor based on the mechanical exfoliation and dry transfer method. Since the bottom electrode was made
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Two-dimensional materials based vertical field-effect transistors have been widely studied due to their useful applications in industry. In the present study, we fabricate graphene/MoS2/(Cr/Au) vertical transistor based on the mechanical exfoliation and dry transfer method. Since the bottom electrode was made of monolayer graphene (Gr), the electrical transport in our Gr/MoS2/(Cr/Au) vertical transistors can be significantly modified by using back-gate voltage. Schottky barrier height at the interface between Gr and MoS2 can be modified by back-gate voltage and the current bias. Vertical resistance (Rvert) of a Gr/MoS2/(Cr/Au) transistor is compared with planar resistance (Rplanar) of a conventional lateral MoS2 field-effect transistor. We have also studied electrical properties for various thicknesses of MoS2 channels in both vertical and lateral transistors. As the thickness of MoS2 increases, Rvert increases, but Rplanar decreases. The increase of Rvert in the thicker MoS2 film is attributed to the interlayer resistance in the vertical direction. However, Rplanar shows a lower value for a thicker MoS2 film because of an excess of charge carriers available in upper layers connected directly to source/drain contacts that limits the conduction through layers closed to source/drain electrodes. Hence, interlayer resistance associated with these layers contributes to planer resistance in contrast to vertical devices in which all layers contribute interlayer resistance. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle PEG 400-Based Phase Change Materials Nano-Enhanced with Functionalized Graphene Nanoplatelets
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010016
Received: 17 November 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 25 December 2017 / Published: 29 December 2017
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Abstract
This study presents new Nano-enhanced Phase Change Materials, NePCMs, formulated as dispersions of functionalized graphene nanoplatelets in a poly(ethylene glycol) with a mass-average molecular mass of 400 g·mol−1 for possible use in Thermal Energy Storage. Morphology, functionalization, purity, molecular mass and thermal
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This study presents new Nano-enhanced Phase Change Materials, NePCMs, formulated as dispersions of functionalized graphene nanoplatelets in a poly(ethylene glycol) with a mass-average molecular mass of 400 g·mol−1 for possible use in Thermal Energy Storage. Morphology, functionalization, purity, molecular mass and thermal stability of the graphene nanomaterial and/or the poly(ethylene glycol) were characterized. Design parameters of NePCMs were defined on the basis of a temporal stability study of nanoplatelet dispersions using dynamic light scattering. Influence of graphene loading on solid-liquid phase change transition temperature, latent heat of fusion, isobaric heat capacity, thermal conductivity, density, isobaric thermal expansivity, thermal diffusivity and dynamic viscosity were also investigated for designed dispersions. Graphene nanoplatelet loading leads to thermal conductivity enhancements up to 23% while the crystallization temperature reduces up to in 4 K. Finally, the heat storage capacities of base fluid and new designed NePCMs were examined by means of the thermophysical properties through Stefan and Rayleigh numbers. Functionalized graphene nanoplatelets leads to a slight increase in the Stefan number. Full article
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Open AccessArticle One-Step Electrochemical Fabrication of Reduced Graphene Oxide/Gold Nanoparticles Nanocomposite-Modified Electrode for Simultaneous Detection of Dopamine, Ascorbic Acid, and Uric Acid
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010017
Received: 23 November 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 30 December 2017
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Abstract
Here, we introduce the preparation of the hybrid nanocomposite-modified electrode consisting of reduced graphene oxide (RGO) and gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) using the one-step electrochemical method, allowing for the simultaneous and individual detection of dopamine (DA), ascorbic acid (AA), and uric acid (UA). RGO/AuNPs
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Here, we introduce the preparation of the hybrid nanocomposite-modified electrode consisting of reduced graphene oxide (RGO) and gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) using the one-step electrochemical method, allowing for the simultaneous and individual detection of dopamine (DA), ascorbic acid (AA), and uric acid (UA). RGO/AuNPs nanocomposite was formed on a glassy carbon electrode by the co-reduction of GO and Au3+ using the potentiodynamic method. The RGO/AuNPs nanocomposite-modified electrode was produced by subjecting a mixed solution of GO and Au3+ to cyclic sweeping from −1.5 V to 0.8 V (vs. Ag/AgCl) at a scan rate 10 mV/s for 3 cycles. The modified electrode was characterized by scanning electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, contact angle measurement, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, and cyclic voltammetry. Voltammetry results confirm that the RGO/AuNPs nanocomposite-modified electrode has high catalytic activity and good resolution for the detection of DA, AA, and UA. The RGO/AuNPs nanocomposite-modified electrode exhibits stable amperometric responses for DA, AA, and UA, respectively, and its detection limits were estimated to be 0.14, 9.5, and 25 μM. The modified electrode shows high selectivity towards the determination of DA, AA, or UA in the presence of potentially active bioelements. In addition, the resulting sensor exhibits many advantages such as fast amperometric response, excellent operational stability, and appropriate practicality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials for Electrocatalytic Applications in Energy and Sensing)
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Open AccessArticle Ethanol-Mediated 2D Growth of Cu2O Nanoarchitectures on Nanoporous Cu Templates in Anhydrous Ethanol
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010018
Received: 5 December 2017 / Revised: 26 December 2017 / Accepted: 27 December 2017 / Published: 31 December 2017
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Abstract
Two types of cupric oxide (Cu2O) nanoarchitectures (nanobelts and nanopetal networks) have been achieved via immersion nanoporous copper (NPC) templates in anhydrous ethanol. NPC templates with different defect densities have been prepared by dealloying amorphous Ti60Cu40 ribbons in
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Two types of cupric oxide (Cu2O) nanoarchitectures (nanobelts and nanopetal networks) have been achieved via immersion nanoporous copper (NPC) templates in anhydrous ethanol. NPC templates with different defect densities have been prepared by dealloying amorphous Ti60Cu40 ribbons in a mixture solution of hydrofluoric acid and polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) with different ratios of HF/PVP. Both a water molecule reactant acting as OH reservoir and the ethanol molecule serving as stabilizing or capping reagent for inhibiting the random growth of Cu2Oplayed a role of the formation of 2-dimensional Cu2O nanoarchitectures. Cu2O nanobelts are preferred to form in anhydrous ethanol on the NPC templates from Ti60Cu40 ribbons dealloying in the solution with low HF concentration and small addition of PVP; and Cu2O nanopetals are tended to grow in anhydrous ethanol from the NPC templates from Ti60Cu40 ribbons dealloying in the solution with high HF concentration and large addition of PVP. With increasing the immersion time in anhydrous ethanol, Cu2O nanopetals united together to create porous networks about 300 nm in thickness. The defect sites (i.e., twin boundary) on nanoporous Cu ligaments preferentially served as nucleation sites for Cu2O nanocrystals, and the higher defect density leads to the formation of uniform Cu2O layer. Synergistic effect of initial microstructure of NPC templates and stabilizing agent of ethanol molecule results in different Cu2O nanoarchitectures. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Improvement in Electrode Performance of Novel SWCNT Loaded Three-Dimensional Porous RVC Composite Electrodes by Electrochemical Deposition Method
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010019
Received: 26 October 2017 / Revised: 13 December 2017 / Accepted: 15 December 2017 / Published: 1 January 2018
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Abstract
The three-dimensional (3D) composite electrodes were prepared by depositing different amounts of acid-functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes (a-SWCNTs) on porous reticulated vitreous carbon (RVC) through the electrochemical deposition method. The SWCNT was functionalized by the reflux method in nitric acid and was proven by
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The three-dimensional (3D) composite electrodes were prepared by depositing different amounts of acid-functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes (a-SWCNTs) on porous reticulated vitreous carbon (RVC) through the electrochemical deposition method. The SWCNT was functionalized by the reflux method in nitric acid and was proven by Raman and visible spectra. The optimum time for sonication to disperse the functionalized SWCNT (a-SWCNT) in dimethyl formamide (DMF) well was determined by UV spectra. The average pore size of RVC electrodes was calculated from scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images. Moreover, the surface morphology of composite electrodes was also examined by SEM study. All 3D electrodes were evaluated for their electrochemical properties by cyclic voltammetry. The result showed that the value of specific capacitance of the electrode increases with the increase in the amount of a-SWCNT in geometric volume. However, the value of specific capacitance per gram decreases with the increase in scan rate as well as the amount of a-SWCNT. The stability of the electrodes was also tested. This revealed that all the electrodes were stable; however, lower a-SWCNT-loaded electrodes had excellent cyclic stability. These results suggest that the a-SWCNT-coated RVC electrodes have promise as an effective technology for desalination. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Design, Synthesis, and Structure-Property Relationships of Er3+-Doped TiO2 Luminescent Particles Synthesized by Sol-Gel
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010020
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 2 January 2018
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Abstract
Titania particles doped with various concentrations of Erbium were synthesized by the sol-gel method followed by different heat treatments. The shape and the grain growth of the particles were noticeably affected by the concentration of Erbium and the heat treatment conditions. An infrared
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Titania particles doped with various concentrations of Erbium were synthesized by the sol-gel method followed by different heat treatments. The shape and the grain growth of the particles were noticeably affected by the concentration of Erbium and the heat treatment conditions. An infrared emission at 1530 nm, as well as green and red up-conversion emissions at 550 and 670 nm, were observed under excitation at 976 nm from all of the synthesized particles. The emission spectra and lifetime values appeared to be strongly influenced by the presence of the different crystalline phases. This work presents important guidelines for the synthesis of functional Er3+-doped titania particles with controlled and tailored spectroscopic properties for photonic applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle DeNOx Abatement over Sonically Prepared Iron-Substituted Y, USY and MFI Zeolite Catalysts in Lean Exhaust Gas Conditions
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010021
Received: 9 November 2017 / Revised: 19 December 2017 / Accepted: 30 December 2017 / Published: 3 January 2018
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Abstract
Iron-substituted MFI, Y and USY zeolites prepared by two preparation routes—classical ion exchange and the ultrasound modified ion-exchange method—were characterised by micro-Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and ultraviolet (UV)/visible diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (UV/Vis DRS). Ultrasound irradiation, a new technique
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Iron-substituted MFI, Y and USY zeolites prepared by two preparation routes—classical ion exchange and the ultrasound modified ion-exchange method—were characterised by micro-Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and ultraviolet (UV)/visible diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (UV/Vis DRS). Ultrasound irradiation, a new technique for the preparation of the metal salt suspension before incorporation to the zeolite structure, was employed. An experimental study of selective catalytic reduction (SCR) of NO with NH3 on both iron-substituted reference zeolite catalysts and those prepared through the application of ultrasound conducted during an ion-exchange process is presented. The prepared zeolite catalysts show high activity and selectivity in SCR deNOx abatement. The MFI-based iron catalysts, especially those prepared via the sonochemical method, revealed superior activity in the deNOx process, with almost 100% selectivity towards N2. The hydrothermal stability test confirmed high stability and activity of MFI-based catalysts in water-rich conditions during the deNOx reaction at 450 °C. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanosized Zeolites and their Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Organozinc Precursor-Derived Crystalline ZnO Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Characterization and Their Spectroscopic Properties
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010022
Received: 5 November 2017 / Revised: 20 December 2017 / Accepted: 21 December 2017 / Published: 4 January 2018
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Abstract
Crystalline ZnO-ROH and ZnO-OR (R = Me, Et, iPr, nBu) nanoparticles (NPs) have been successfully synthesized by the thermal decomposition of in-situ-formed organozinc complexes Zn(OR)2 deriving from the reaction of Zn[N(SiMe3)2]2 with ROH
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Crystalline ZnO-ROH and ZnO-OR (R = Me, Et, iPr, nBu) nanoparticles (NPs) have been successfully synthesized by the thermal decomposition of in-situ-formed organozinc complexes Zn(OR)2 deriving from the reaction of Zn[N(SiMe3)2]2 with ROH and of the freshly prepared Zn(OR)2 under an identical condition, respectively. With increasing carbon chain length of alkyl alcohol, the thermal decomposition temperature and dispersibility of in-situ-formed intermediate zinc alkoxides in oleylamine markedly influenced the particle sizes of ZnO-ROH and its shape (sphere, plate-like aggregations), while a strong diffraction peak-broadening effect is observed with decreasing particle size. For ZnO-OR NPs, different particle sizes and various morphologies (hollow sphere or cuboid-like rod, solid sphere) are also observed. As a comparison, the calcination of the fresh-prepared Zn(OR)2 generated ZnO-R NPs possessing the particle sizes of 5.4~34.1 nm. All crystalline ZnO nanoparticles are characterized using X-ray diffraction analysis, electron microscopy and solid-state 1H and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. The size effect caused by confinement of electrons’ movement and the defect centres caused by unpaired electrons on oxygen vacancies or ionized impurity heteroatoms in the crystal lattices are monitored by UV-visible spectroscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and photoluminescent (PL) spectroscopy, respectively. Based on the types of defects determined by EPR signals and correspondingly defect-induced probably appeared PL peak position compared to actual obtained PL spectra, we find that it is difficult to establish a direct relationship between defect types and PL peak position, revealing the complication of the formation of defect types and photoluminescence properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ZnO and TiO2 Based Nanostructures)
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Open AccessArticle In-Silico Design, Synthesis and Evaluation of a Nanostructured Hydrogel as a Dimethoate Removal Agent
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010023
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 28 December 2017 / Accepted: 30 December 2017 / Published: 4 January 2018
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Abstract
This study describes the in-silico design, synthesis, and evaluation of a cross-linked PVA hydrogel (CLPH) for the absorption of organophosphorus pesticide dimethoate from aqueous solutions. The crosslinking effectiveness of 14 dicarboxilic acids was evaluated through in-silico studies using semiempirical quantum mechanical calculations. According
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This study describes the in-silico design, synthesis, and evaluation of a cross-linked PVA hydrogel (CLPH) for the absorption of organophosphorus pesticide dimethoate from aqueous solutions. The crosslinking effectiveness of 14 dicarboxilic acids was evaluated through in-silico studies using semiempirical quantum mechanical calculations. According to the theoretical studies, the nanopore of PVA cross-linked with malic acid (CLPH-MA) showed the best interaction energy with dimethoate. Later, using all-atom molecular dynamics simulations, three hydrogels with different proportions of PVA:MA (10:2, 10:4, and 10:6) were used to evaluate their interactions with dimethoate. These results showed that the suitable crosslinking degree for improving the affinity for the pesticide was with 20% (W%) of the cross-linker. In the experimental absorption study, the synthesized CLPH-MA20 recovered 100% of dimethoate from aqueous solutions. Therefore, the theoretical data were correlated with the experimental studies. Surface morphology of CLPH-MA20 by Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) was analyzed. In conclusion, the ability of CLPH-MA20 to remove dimethoate could be used as a technological alternative for the treatment of contaminated water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Experimental Nanosciences, Computational Chemistry, and Data Analysis)
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Open AccessArticle Enhanced and Selective Antiproliferative Activity of Methotrexate-Functionalized-Nanocapsules to Human Breast Cancer Cells (MCF-7)
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010024
Received: 3 November 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 4 January 2018
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Abstract
Methotrexate is a folic acid antagonist and its incorporation into nanoformulations is a promising strategy to increase the drug antiproliferative effect on human breast cancer cells by overexpressing folate receptors. To evaluate the efficiency and selectivity of nanoformulations containing methotrexate and its diethyl
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Methotrexate is a folic acid antagonist and its incorporation into nanoformulations is a promising strategy to increase the drug antiproliferative effect on human breast cancer cells by overexpressing folate receptors. To evaluate the efficiency and selectivity of nanoformulations containing methotrexate and its diethyl ester derivative, using two mechanisms of drug incorporation (encapsulation and surface functionalization) in the in vitro cellular uptake and antiproliferative activity in non-tumoral immortalized human keratinocytes (HaCaT) and in human breast carcinoma cells (MCF-7). Methotrexate and its diethyl ester derivative were incorporated into multiwall lipid-core nanocapsules with hydrodynamic diameters lower than 160 nm and higher drug incorporation efficiency. The nanoformulations were applied to semiconfluent HaCaT or MCF-7 cells. After 24 h, the nanocapsules were internalized into HaCaT and MCF-7 cells; however, no significant difference was observed between the nanoformulations in HaCaT (low expression of folate receptors), while they showed significantly higher cellular uptakes than the blank-nanoformulation in MCF-7, which was the highest uptakes observed for the drug functionalized-nanocapsules. No antiproliferative activity was observed in HaCaT culture, whereas drug-containing nanoformulations showed antiproliferative activity against MCF-7 cells. The effect was higher for drug-surface functionalized nanocapsules. In conclusion, methotrexate-functionalized-nanocapsules showed enhanced and selective antiproliferative activity to human breast cancer cells (MCF-7) being promising products for further in vivo pre-clinical evaluations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle Comparative Evaluation of U.S. Brand and Generic Intravenous Sodium Ferric Gluconate Complex in Sucrose Injection: Physicochemical Characterization
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010025
Received: 23 October 2017 / Revised: 18 December 2017 / Accepted: 20 December 2017 / Published: 5 January 2018
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Abstract
The objective of this study was to evaluate physicochemical equivalence between brand (i.e., Ferrlecit) and generic sodium ferric gluconate (SFG) in sucrose injection by conducting a series of comparative in vitro characterizations using advanced analytical techniques. The elemental iron and carbon content, thermal
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The objective of this study was to evaluate physicochemical equivalence between brand (i.e., Ferrlecit) and generic sodium ferric gluconate (SFG) in sucrose injection by conducting a series of comparative in vitro characterizations using advanced analytical techniques. The elemental iron and carbon content, thermal properties, viscosity, particle size, zeta potential, sedimentation coefficient, and molecular weight were determined. There was no noticeable difference between brand and generic SFG in sucrose injection for the above physical parameters evaluated, except for the sedimentation coefficient determined by sedimentation velocity analytical ultracentrifugation (SV-AUC) and molecular weight by asymmetric field flow fractionation-multi-angle light scattering (AFFF-MALS). In addition, brand and generic SFG complex products showed comparable molecular weight distributions when determined by gel permeation chromatography (GPC). The observed minor differences between brand and generic SFG, such as sedimentation coefficient, do not impact their biological activities in separate studies of in vitro cellular uptake and rat biodistribution. Coupled with the ongoing clinical study comparing the labile iron level in healthy volunteers, the FDA-funded post-market studies intended to illustrate comprehensive surveillance efforts ensuring safety and efficacy profiles of generic SFG complex in sucrose injection, and also to shed new light on the approval standards on generic parenteral iron colloidal products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle UV-Assisted Photochemical Synthesis of Reduced Graphene Oxide/ZnO Nanowires Composite for Photoresponse Enhancement in UV Photodetectors
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010026
Received: 7 November 2017 / Revised: 12 December 2017 / Accepted: 2 January 2018 / Published: 5 January 2018
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Abstract
The weak photon absorption and high recombination rate of electron-hole pairs in disordered zinc oxide nanowires (ZNWs) limit its application in UV photodetection. This limitation can be overcome by introducing graphene sheets to the ZNWs. Herein we report a high-performance photodetector based on
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The weak photon absorption and high recombination rate of electron-hole pairs in disordered zinc oxide nanowires (ZNWs) limit its application in UV photodetection. This limitation can be overcome by introducing graphene sheets to the ZNWs. Herein we report a high-performance photodetector based on one-dimensional (1D) wide band-gap semiconductor disordered ZNWs composited with reduced graphene oxide (RGO) for ultraviolet (UV) photoresponse enhancement. The RGO/ZNWs composites have been successfully synthetized through UV-assisted photochemical reduction of GO in ZNWs suspension. The material characterizations in morphology, Raman scattering, and Ultraviolet-visible light absorption verified the formation of graphene sheets attached in ZNWs network and the enhancement of UV absorption due to the introduction of graphene. In comparison with photodetectors based on pure ZNWs, the photodetectors based on RGO/ZNWs composite exhibit enhanced photoresponse with photocurrent density of 5.87 mA·cm−2, on/off current ratio of 3.01 × 104, and responsivity of 1.83 A·W−1 when a UV irradiation of 3.26 mW·cm−2 and 1.0 V bias were used. Theory analysis is also presented to get insight into the inherent mechanisms of separation and transportation of photo-excited carriers in RGO/ZNWs composite. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials for Sensing Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Reorientation of Graphene Platelets (GPLs) on Young’s Modulus of Polymer Composites under Bi-Axial Stretching
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010027
Received: 10 November 2017 / Revised: 4 December 2017 / Accepted: 4 January 2018 / Published: 7 January 2018
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Abstract
Effects of bi-axial stretching induced reorientation of graphene platelets (GPLs) on the Young’s modulus of GPL/polymer composites is studied by Mori-Tanaka micromechanics model. The dispersion state of the GPLs in polymer matrix is captured by an orientation distribution function (ODF), in which two
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Effects of bi-axial stretching induced reorientation of graphene platelets (GPLs) on the Young’s modulus of GPL/polymer composites is studied by Mori-Tanaka micromechanics model. The dispersion state of the GPLs in polymer matrix is captured by an orientation distribution function (ODF), in which two Euler angles are used to identify the orientation of the GPLs. Compared to uni-axial stretching, the increase of the stretching strain in the second direction enhances the re-alignment of GPL fillers in this direction while it deteriorates the re-alignment of the fillers in the other two directions. Comprehensive parametric study on the effects of the out-of-plane Young’s modulus, stretching strain, strain ratio, Poisson’s ratio and weight fraction and GPL dimension on the effective Young’s moduli of the composites in the three directions are conducted. It is found that the out-of-plane Young’s modulus has limited effects on the overall Young’s modulus of the composites. The second stretching enhances the Young’s modulus in this direction while it decreases the Young’s modulus in the other two directions. The results demonstrate the increase of Poisson’s ratio is favorable in increasing the Young’s modulus of the composites. GPLs with larger diameter-to-thickness ratio have better reinforcing effect on the Young’s modulus of GPL/polymer nanocomposites. Full article
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Open AccessArticle UV-Vis-Induced Degradation of Phenol over Magnetic Photocatalysts Modified with Pt, Pd, Cu and Au Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010028
Received: 20 November 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 1 January 2018 / Published: 7 January 2018
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Abstract
The combination of TiO2 photocatalyst and magnetic oxide nanoparticles enhances the separation and recoverable properties of nanosized TiO2 photocatalyst. Metal-modified (Me = Pd, Au, Pt, Cu) TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4 nanocomposites were prepared by an ultrasonic-assisted sol-gel
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The combination of TiO2 photocatalyst and magnetic oxide nanoparticles enhances the separation and recoverable properties of nanosized TiO2 photocatalyst. Metal-modified (Me = Pd, Au, Pt, Cu) TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4 nanocomposites were prepared by an ultrasonic-assisted sol-gel method. All prepared samples were characterized by X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) analysis, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) method, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), Mott-Schottky analysis and photoluminescence spectroscopy (PL). Phenol oxidation pathways of magnetic photocatalysts modified with Pt, Pd, Cu and Au nanoparticles proceeded by generation of reactive oxygen species, which oxidized phenol to benzoquinone, hydroquinone and catechol. Benzoquinone and maleic acid were products, which were determined in the hydroquinone oxidation pathway. The highest mineralization rate was observed for Pd-TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4 and Cu-TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4 photocatalysts, which produced the highest concentration of catechol during photocatalytic reaction. For Pt-TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4 nanocomposite, a lack of catechol after 60 min of irradiation resulted in low mineralization rate (CO2 formation). It is proposed that the enhanced photocatalytic activity of palladium and copper-modified photocatalysts is related to an increase in the amount of adsorption sites and efficient charge carrier separation, whereas the keto-enol tautomeric equilibrium retards the rate of phenol photomineralization on Au-TiO2/SiO2@Fe3O4. The magnetization hysteresis loop indicated that the obtained hybrid photocatalyst showed magnetic properties and therefore could be easily separated after treatment process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Noble Metal Nanoparticles in Catalysis)
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Open AccessArticle A Tensile Constitutive Relationship and a Finite Element Model of Electrospun Nanofibrous Mats
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010029
Received: 5 December 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 2 January 2018 / Published: 8 January 2018
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Abstract
It is difficult to establish a numerical model for a certain structure of electrospun nanofibrous mats, due to their high porosity and non-linear characteristics, that can fully consider these characteristics and describe their mechanical behaviors. In this paper, an analytical method of meso-mechanics
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It is difficult to establish a numerical model for a certain structure of electrospun nanofibrous mats, due to their high porosity and non-linear characteristics, that can fully consider these characteristics and describe their mechanical behaviors. In this paper, an analytical method of meso-mechanics was adopted to establish the tensile constitutive relationship between a single fiber and mats from fiber-web microstructures. Meanwhile, a macroscopic finite element model was developed and verified through uniaxial tensile stress-strain experimental data of silk fibroin (SF)/polycaprolactone (PCL) nanofibrous mats. The compared results show that the constitutive relation and finite element model could satisfactorily express elastic-plastic tensile mechanical behaviors of the polymer. This model helps regulate the microstructure of nanofibrous mats to meet the mechanical requirements in engineering applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nano-scale Mechanics of Biological Materials)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle TiO2 Films Modified with Au Nanoclusters as Self-Cleaning Surfaces under Visible Light
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010030
Received: 14 November 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 8 January 2018
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Abstract
In this study, we applied cluster beam deposition (CBD) as a new approach for fabricating efficient plasmon-based photocatalytic materials. Au nanoclusters (AuNCs) produced in the gas phase were deposited on TiO2 P25-coated silicon wafers with coverage ranging from 2 to 8 atomic
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In this study, we applied cluster beam deposition (CBD) as a new approach for fabricating efficient plasmon-based photocatalytic materials. Au nanoclusters (AuNCs) produced in the gas phase were deposited on TiO2 P25-coated silicon wafers with coverage ranging from 2 to 8 atomic monolayer (ML) equivalents. Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) images of the AuNCs modified TiO2 P25 films show that the surface is uniformly covered by the AuNCs that remain isolated at low coverage (2 ML, 4 ML) and aggregate at higher coverage (8 ML). A clear relationship between AuNCs coverage and photocatalytic activity towards stearic acid photo-oxidation was measured, both under ultraviolet and green light illumination. TiO2 P25 covered with 4 ML AuNCs showed the best stearic acid photo-oxidation performance under green light illumination (Formal Quantum Efficiency 1.6 × 10−6 over a period of 93 h). These results demonstrate the large potential of gas-phase AuNCs beam deposition technology for the fabrication of visible light active plasmonic photocatalysts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Preparation and Application of Hybrid Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle Uniformly Dispersed and Re-Agglomerated Graphene Oxide-Based Cement Pastes: A Comparison of Rheological Properties, Mechanical Properties and Microstructure
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010031
Received: 9 December 2017 / Revised: 3 January 2018 / Accepted: 5 January 2018 / Published: 9 January 2018
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Abstract
The properties of graphene oxide (GO)-based cement paste can be significantly affected by the state of GO dispersion. In this study, the effects of uniformly dispersed and re-agglomerated GO on the rheological, mechanical properties and microstructure of cement paste were systematically investigated. Two
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The properties of graphene oxide (GO)-based cement paste can be significantly affected by the state of GO dispersion. In this study, the effects of uniformly dispersed and re-agglomerated GO on the rheological, mechanical properties and microstructure of cement paste were systematically investigated. Two distinct dispersion states can be achieved by altering the mixing sequence: Polycarboxylate-ether (PCE) mixed with GO-cement or cement mixed with GO-PCE. The experimental results showed that the yield stress and plastic viscosity increased with the uniformly dispersed GO when compared to those of re-agglomerated GO cement paste. Moreover, the 3-day compressive and flexural strengths of uniformly dispersed GO paste were 8% and 27%, respectively, higher than those of re-agglomerated GO pastes. The results of X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy analyses demonstrated that uniformly dispersed GO more effectively promotes the formation of hydration products in hardened cement paste. Furthermore, a porosity analysis using mercury intrusion porosimetry revealed that the homogeneous dispersion of GO can better inhibit the formation of large-size pores and optimize the pore size distribution at 3 and 7 days than the re-agglomerated GO. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Nanopatterning via Self-Assembly of a Lamellar-Forming Polystyrene-block-Poly(dimethylsiloxane) Diblock Copolymer on Topographical Substrates Fabricated by Nanoimprint Lithography
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010032
Received: 8 December 2017 / Revised: 28 December 2017 / Accepted: 2 January 2018 / Published: 9 January 2018
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Abstract
The self-assembly of a lamellar-forming polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PS-b-PDMS) diblock copolymer (DBCP) was studied herein for surface nanopatterning. The DBCP was synthesized by sequential living anionic polymerization of styrene and hexamethylcyclotrisiloxane (D3). The number average molecular weight (M
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The self-assembly of a lamellar-forming polystyrene-block-poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PS-b-PDMS) diblock copolymer (DBCP) was studied herein for surface nanopatterning. The DBCP was synthesized by sequential living anionic polymerization of styrene and hexamethylcyclotrisiloxane (D3). The number average molecular weight (Mn), polydispersity index (Mw/Mn) and PS volume fraction (φps) of the DBCP were MnPS = 23.0 kg mol−1, MnPDMS = 15.0 kg mol−1, Mw/Mn = 1.06 and φps = 0.6. Thin films of the DBCP were cast and solvent annealed on topographically patterned polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxane (POSS) substrates. The lamellae repeat distance or pitch (λL) and the width of the PDMS features (dL) are ~35 nm and ~17 nm, respectively, as determined by SEM. The chemistry of the POSS substrates was tuned, and the effects on the self-assembly of the DBCP noted. The PDMS nanopatterns were used as etching mask in order to transfer the DBCP pattern to underlying silicon substrate by a complex plasma etch process yielding sub-15 nm silicon features. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Surface Decoration of ZnWO4 Nanorods with Cu2O Nanoparticles to Build Heterostructure with Enhanced Photocatalysis
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 33; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010033
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 9 January 2018
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Abstract
The surface of ZnWO4 nanorods was decorated with Cu2O nanoparticles (Cu2O/ZnWO4) prepared through a precipitation method. The Cu2O nanoparticles were tightly deposited on the ZnWO4 surface and had average diameters of 20 nm.
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The surface of ZnWO4 nanorods was decorated with Cu2O nanoparticles (Cu2O/ZnWO4) prepared through a precipitation method. The Cu2O nanoparticles were tightly deposited on the ZnWO4 surface and had average diameters of 20 nm. The nanoparticles not only promoted the absorption and utilization of visible light but also facilitated the separation of photogenerated charge carriers. This brought an improvement of the photocatalytic activity. The 5 wt % Cu2O/ZnWO4 photocatalyst displayed the highest degrade efficiency for methylene blue (MB) degradation under visible light, which was 7.8 and 2 times higher than pure ZnWO4 and Cu2O, respectively. Meanwhile, the Cu2O/ZnWO4 composite photocatalyst was able to go through phenol degradation under visible light. The results of photoluminescence (PL), photocurrent, and electrochemical impedance spectra (EIS) measurements were consistent and prove the rapid separation of charge, which originated from the match level structure and the close contact with the interface. The radical and hole trapping experiments were carried out to detect the main active substances in the photodegradation process. The holes and ·O2 radicals were predicted to dominate the photocatalytic process. Based on the characterization analysis and experiment results, a possible photocatalytic mechanism for enhancing photocatalytic activity was proposed. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Inihibition of Glycolysis by Using a Micro/Nano-Lipid Bromopyruvic Chitosan Carrier as a Promising Tool to Improve Treatment of Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010034
Received: 15 December 2017 / Revised: 5 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 January 2018 / Published: 10 January 2018
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Abstract
Glucose consumption in many types of cancer cells, in particular hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), was followed completely by over-expression of type II hexokinase (HKII). This evidence has been used in modern pharmacotherapy to discover therapeutic target against glycolysis in cancer cells. Bromopyruvate (BrPA) exhibits
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Glucose consumption in many types of cancer cells, in particular hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), was followed completely by over-expression of type II hexokinase (HKII). This evidence has been used in modern pharmacotherapy to discover therapeutic target against glycolysis in cancer cells. Bromopyruvate (BrPA) exhibits antagonist property against HKII and can be used to inhibit glycolysis. However, the clinical application of BrPA is mostly combined with inhibition effect for healthy cells particularly erythrocytes. Our strategy is to encapsulate BrPA in a selected vehicle, without any leakage of BrPA out of vehicle in blood stream. This structure has been constructed from chitosan embedded into oleic acid layer and then coated by dual combination of folic acid (FA) and bovine serum albumin (BSA). With FA as specific ligand for cancer folate receptor and BSA that can be an easy binding for hepatocytes, they can raise the potential selection of carrier system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocolloids for Nanomedicine and Drug Delivery)
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Open AccessArticle Self-Assembled AgNP-Containing Nanocomposites Constructed by Electrospinning as Efficient Dye Photocatalyst Materials for Wastewater Treatment
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010035
Received: 11 December 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 5 January 2018 / Published: 10 January 2018
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Abstract
The design and self-assembly of graphene oxide (GO)-based composite membranes have attracted enormous attention due to their wide application in nanomaterial and environmental fields. In this work, we have successfully developed a strategy to fabricate new composite membranes based on poly(vinyl alcohol)/poly(acrylic acid)/carboxyl-functionalized
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The design and self-assembly of graphene oxide (GO)-based composite membranes have attracted enormous attention due to their wide application in nanomaterial and environmental fields. In this work, we have successfully developed a strategy to fabricate new composite membranes based on poly(vinyl alcohol)/poly(acrylic acid)/carboxyl-functionalized graphene oxide modified with silver nanoparticles (PVA/PAA/GO-COOH@AgNPs), which were prepared via thermal treatment and the electrospinning technique. Due to the strong π-π forces and strong electrostatic interactions of GO–COOH sheets, the prepared composite membranes and their lager surface areas were modified by scores of AgNPs, which demonstrated that a high-efficiency photocatalyst removed the organic dyes from the aqueous solutions. The prepared PVA/PAA/GO-COOH@AgNPs nanocomposite membranes showed a remarkable photocatalytic capacity in the catalytic degradation of the methylene blue dye solutions. Most importantly, the whole process was easy, mild, and eco-friendly. Additionally, the as-prepared membranes could be repeatedly used after the catalytic reaction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Fabrication and Application of Nanofibers)
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Open AccessArticle Positron Spectroscopy of Nanodiamonds after Hydrogen Sorption
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 36; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010036
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 9 January 2018 / Accepted: 10 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
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Abstract
The structure and defects of nanodiamonds influence the hydrogen sorption capacity. Positronium can be used as a sensor for detecting places with the most efficient capture of hydrogen atoms. Hydrogenation of carbon materials was performed from gas atmosphere. The concentration of hydrogen absorbed
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The structure and defects of nanodiamonds influence the hydrogen sorption capacity. Positronium can be used as a sensor for detecting places with the most efficient capture of hydrogen atoms. Hydrogenation of carbon materials was performed from gas atmosphere. The concentration of hydrogen absorbed by the sample depends on the temperature and pressure. The concentration 1.2 wt % is achieved at the temperature of 243 K and the pressure of 0.6 MPa. The hydrogen saturation of nanodiamonds changes the positron lifetime. Increase of sorption cycle numbers effects the positron lifetime, as well as the parameters of the Doppler broadening of annihilation line. The electron-positron annihilation being a sensitive method, it allows detecting the electron density fluctuation of the carbon material after hydrogen saturation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Gentamicin Sulfate PEG-PLGA/PLGA-H Nanoparticles: Screening Design and Antimicrobial Effect Evaluation toward Clinic Bacterial Isolates
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 37; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010037
Received: 15 December 2017 / Revised: 2 January 2018 / Accepted: 4 January 2018 / Published: 12 January 2018
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Abstract
Nanotechnology is a promising approach both for restoring or enhancing activity of old and conventional antimicrobial agents and for treating intracellular infections by providing intracellular targeting and sustained release of drug inside infected cells. The present paper introduces a formulation study of gentamicin
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Nanotechnology is a promising approach both for restoring or enhancing activity of old and conventional antimicrobial agents and for treating intracellular infections by providing intracellular targeting and sustained release of drug inside infected cells. The present paper introduces a formulation study of gentamicin loaded biodegradable nanoparticles (Nps). Solid-oil-in water technique was studied for gentamicin sulfate nanoencapsulation using uncapped Polylactide-co-glycolide (PLGA-H) and Polylactide-co-glycolide-co-Polyethylenglycol (PLGA-PEG) blends. Screening design was applied to optimize: drug payload, Nps size and size distribution, stability and resuspendability after freeze-drying. PLGA-PEG concentration resulted most significant factor influencing particles size and drug content (DC): 8 w/w% DC and 200 nm Nps were obtained. Stirring rate resulted most influencing factor for size distribution (PDI): 700 rpm permitted to obtain homogeneous Nps dispersion (PDI = 1). Further experimental parameters investigated, by 23 screening design, were: polymer blend composition (PLGA-PEG and PLGA-H), Polyvinylalcohol (PVA) and methanol concentrations into aqueous phase. Drug content was increased to 10.5 w/w%. Nanoparticle lyophilization was studied adding cryoprotectants, polyvinypirrolidone K17 and K32, and sodiumcarboxymetylcellulose. Freeze-drying protocol was optimized by a mixture design. A freeze-dried Nps powder free resuspendable with stable Nps size and payload, was developed. The powder was tested on clinic bacterial isolates demonstrating that after encapsulation, gentamicin sulfate kept its activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antibacterial Activity of Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle Engineering Ru@Pt Core-Shell Catalysts for Enhanced Electrochemical Oxygen Reduction Mass Activity and Stability
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010038
Received: 22 November 2017 / Revised: 6 January 2018 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 12 January 2018
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Abstract
Improving the performance of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) electrocatalysts is essential for the commercial efficacy of many renewable energy technologies, including low temperature polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs). Herein, we report highly active and stable carbon-supported Ru@Pt core-shell nanoparticles (Ru@Pt/C) prepared by a
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Improving the performance of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) electrocatalysts is essential for the commercial efficacy of many renewable energy technologies, including low temperature polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs). Herein, we report highly active and stable carbon-supported Ru@Pt core-shell nanoparticles (Ru@Pt/C) prepared by a wet chemical synthesis technique. Through rotating disc electrode testing, the Ru@Pt/C achieves an ORR Pt mass-based activity of 0.50 A mgPt−1 at 0.9 V versus the reversible hydrogen electrode (RHE), which exceeds the activity of the state-of-the-art commercial Pt/C catalyst as well as the Department of Energy 2020 PEFC electrocatalyst activity targets for transportation applications. The impact of various synthetic parameters, including Pt to Ru ratios and catalyst pretreatments (i.e., annealing) are thoroughly explored. Pt-based mass activity of all prepared Ru@Pt/C catalysts was found to exceed 0.4 mgPt−1 across the range of compositions investigated, with the maximum activity catalyst having a Ru:Pt ratio of 1:1. This optimized composition of Ru@Pt/C catalyst demonstrated remarkable stability after 30,000 accelerated durability cycles (0.6 to 1.0 V vs. RHE at 125 mV s−1), maintaining 85% of its initial mass activity. Scanning transmission electron microscopy energy dispersive spectroscopy (STEM-EDS) analysis at various stages of electrochemical testing demonstrated that the Pt shell can provide sufficient protection against the dissolution of the otherwise unstable Ru core. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials Based Fuel Cells and Supercapacitors)
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Open AccessArticle Crystallization of TiO2 Nanotubes by In Situ Heating TEM
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010040
Received: 27 September 2017 / Revised: 12 December 2017 / Accepted: 11 January 2018 / Published: 14 January 2018
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Abstract
The thermally-induced crystallization of anodically grown TiO2 amorphous nanotubes has been studied so far under ambient pressure conditions by techniques such as differential scanning calorimetry and in situ X-ray diffraction, then looking at the overall response of several thousands of nanotubes in
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The thermally-induced crystallization of anodically grown TiO2 amorphous nanotubes has been studied so far under ambient pressure conditions by techniques such as differential scanning calorimetry and in situ X-ray diffraction, then looking at the overall response of several thousands of nanotubes in a carpet arrangement. Here we report a study of this phenomenon based on an in situ transmission electron microscopy approach that uses a twofold strategy. First, a group of some tens of TiO2 amorphous nanotubes was heated looking at their electron diffraction pattern change versus temperature, in order to determine both the initial temperature of crystallization and the corresponding crystalline phases. Second, the experiment was repeated on groups of few nanotubes, imaging their structural evolution in the direct space by spherical aberration-corrected high resolution transmission electron microscopy. These studies showed that, differently from what happens under ambient pressure conditions, under the microscope’s high vacuum (p < 10−5 Pa) the crystallization of TiO2 amorphous nanotubes starts from local small seeds of rutile and brookite, which then grow up with the increasing temperature. Besides, the crystallization started at different temperatures, namely 450 and 380 °C, when the in situ heating was performed irradiating the sample with electron beam energy of 120 or 300 keV, respectively. This difference is due to atomic knock-on effects induced by the electron beam with diverse energy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ZnO and TiO2 Based Nanostructures)
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Open AccessArticle Morphology-Controlled Synthesis of Hematite Nanocrystals and Their Optical, Magnetic and Electrochemical Performance
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010041
Received: 23 December 2017 / Revised: 10 January 2018 / Accepted: 11 January 2018 / Published: 15 January 2018
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Abstract
A series of α-Fe2O3 nanocrystals (NCs) with fascinating morphologies, such as hollow nanoolives, nanotubes, nanospindles, and nanoplates, were prepared through a simple template-free hydrothermal synthesis process. The results showed that the morphologies could be easily controlled by SO42−
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A series of α-Fe2O3 nanocrystals (NCs) with fascinating morphologies, such as hollow nanoolives, nanotubes, nanospindles, and nanoplates, were prepared through a simple template-free hydrothermal synthesis process. The results showed that the morphologies could be easily controlled by SO42− and H2PO4. Physical property analysis showed that the α-Fe2O3 NCs exhibited shape- and size-dependent ferromagnetic and optical behaviors. The absorption band peak of the α-Fe2O3 NCs could be tuned from 320 to 610 nm. Furthermore, when applied as electrode material for supercapacitor, the hollow olive-structure exhibited the highest capacitance (285.9 F·g−1) and an excellent long-term cycling stability (93% after 3000 cycles), indicating that it could serve as a candidate electrode material for a supercapacitor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials Based Fuel Cells and Supercapacitors)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Detection of ZrO2 Nanoparticles in Lung Tissue Sections by Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry and Ion Beam Microscopy
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010044
Received: 26 October 2017 / Revised: 15 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 15 January 2018
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Abstract
The increasing use of nanoparticles (NP) in commercial products requires elaborated techniques to detect NP in the tissue of exposed organisms. However, due to the low amount of material, the detection and exact localization of NP within tissue sections is demanding. In this
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The increasing use of nanoparticles (NP) in commercial products requires elaborated techniques to detect NP in the tissue of exposed organisms. However, due to the low amount of material, the detection and exact localization of NP within tissue sections is demanding. In this respect, Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) and Ion Beam Microscopy (IBM) are promising techniques, because they both offer sub-micron lateral resolutions along with high sensitivities. Here, we compare the performance of the non-material-consumptive IBM and material-consumptive ToF-SIMS for the detection of ZrO2 NP (primary size 9–10 nm) in rat lung tissue. Unfixed or methanol-fixed air-dried cryo-sections were subjected to IBM using proton beam scanning or to three-dimensional ToF-SIMS (3D ToF-SIMS) using either oxygen or argon gas cluster ion beams for complete sample sputtering. Some sample sites were analyzed first by IBM and subsequently by 3D ToF-SIMS, to compare results from exactly the same site. Both techniques revealed that ZrO2 NP particles occurred mostly agglomerated in phagocytic cells with only small quantities being associated to the lung epithelium, with Zr, S, and P colocalized within the same biological structures. However, while IBM provided quantitative information on element distribution, 3D ToF-SIMS delivered a higher lateral resolution and a lower limit of detection under these conditions. We, therefore, conclude that 3D ToF-SIMS, although not yet a quantitative technique, is a highly valuable tool for the detection of NP in biological tissue. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Long-Term Mechanical Behavior of Nano Silica Sol Grouting
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010046
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 8 January 2018 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 16 January 2018
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Abstract
The longevity of grouting has a significant effect on the safe and sustainable operation of many engineering projects. A 500-day experiment was carried out to study the long-term mechanical behavior of nano silica sol grouting. The nano silica sol was activated with different
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The longevity of grouting has a significant effect on the safe and sustainable operation of many engineering projects. A 500-day experiment was carried out to study the long-term mechanical behavior of nano silica sol grouting. The nano silica sol was activated with different proportions of a NaCl catalyst and cured under fluctuating temperature and humidity conditions. The mechanical parameters of the grout samples were tested using an electrohydraulic uniaxial compression tester and an improved Vicat instrument. Scanning electron microscope, X-ray diffraction, and ultrasonic velocity tests were carried out to analyze the strength change micro-mechanism. Tests showed that as the catalyst dosage in the grout mix is decreased, the curves on the graphs showing changes in the weight and geometric parameters of the samples over time could be divided into three stages, a shrinkage stage, a stable stage, and a second shrinkage stage. The catalyst improved the stability of the samples and reduced moisture loss. Temperature rise was also a driving force for moisture loss. Uniaxial compressive stress-strain curves for all of the samples were elastoplastic. The curves for uniaxial compression strength and secant modulus plotted against time could be divided into three stages. Sample brittleness increased with time and the brittleness index increased with higher catalyst dosages in the latter part of the curing time. Plastic strength-time curves exhibit allometric scaling. Curing conditions mainly affect the compactness, and then affect the strength. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Silicon-Based Nanomaterials: Technology and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Novel Hybrid Formulations Based on Thiourea Derivatives and Core@Shell Fe3O4@C18 Nanostructures for the Development of Antifungal Strategies
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 47; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010047
Received: 16 November 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 5 January 2018 / Published: 17 January 2018
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Abstract
The continuously increasing global impact of fungal infections is requiring the rapid development of novel antifungal agents. Due to their multiple pharmacological activities, thiourea derivatives represent privileged candidates for shaping new drugs. We report here the preparation, physico-chemical characterization and bioevaluation of hybrid
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The continuously increasing global impact of fungal infections is requiring the rapid development of novel antifungal agents. Due to their multiple pharmacological activities, thiourea derivatives represent privileged candidates for shaping new drugs. We report here the preparation, physico-chemical characterization and bioevaluation of hybrid nanosystems based on new 2-((4-chlorophenoxy)methyl)-N-(substituted phenylcarbamo-thioyl)benzamides and Fe3O4@C18 core@shell nanoparticles. The new benzamides were prepared by an efficient method, then their structure was confirmed by spectral studies and elemental analysis and they were further loaded on Fe3O4@C18 nanostructures. Both the obtained benzamides and the resulting hybrid nanosystems were tested for their efficiency against planktonic and adherent fungal cells, as well as for their in vitro biocompatibility, using mesenchymal cells. The antibiofilm activity of the obtained benzamides was dependent on the position and nature of substituents, demonstrating that structure modulation could be a very useful approach to enhance their antimicrobial properties. The hybrid nanosystems have shown an increased efficiency in preventing the development of Candida albicans (C. albicans) biofilms and moreover, they exhibited a good biocompatibility, suggesting that Fe3O4@C18core@shell nanoparticles could represent promising nanocarriers for antifungal substances, paving the way to the development of novel effective strategies with prophylactic and therapeutic value for fighting biofilm associated C. albicans infections. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antibacterial Activity of Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle Zinc Tantalum Oxynitride (ZnTaO2N) Photoanode Modified with Cobalt Phosphate Layers for the Photoelectrochemical Oxidation of Alkali Water
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010048
Received: 18 November 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 28 December 2017 / Published: 18 January 2018
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Abstract
Photoanodes fabricated by the electrophoretic deposition of a thermally prepared zinc tantalum oxynitride (ZnTaO2N) catalyst onto indium tin oxide (ITO) substrates show photoactivation for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) in alkaline solutions. The photoactivity of the OER is further boosted by
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Photoanodes fabricated by the electrophoretic deposition of a thermally prepared zinc tantalum oxynitride (ZnTaO2N) catalyst onto indium tin oxide (ITO) substrates show photoactivation for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) in alkaline solutions. The photoactivity of the OER is further boosted by the photodeposition of cobalt phosphate (CoPi) layers onto the surface of the ZnTaO2N photoanodes. Structural, morphological, and photoelectrochemical (PEC) properties of the modified ZnTaO2N photoanodes are studied using X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), ultraviolet visible (UV−Vis) diffuse reflectance spectroscopy, and electrochemical techniques. The presence of the CoPi layer significantly improved the PEC performance of water oxidation in an alkaline sulphate solution. The photocurrent-voltage behavior of the CoPi-modified ZnTaO2N anodes was improved, with the influence being more prominent at lower oxidation potentials. A stable photocurrent density of about 2.3 mA·cm−2 at 1.23 V vs. RHE was attained upon visible light illumination. Relative to the ZnTaO2N photoanodes, an almost three-fold photocurrent increase was achieved at the CoPi/ZnTaO2N photoelectrode. Perovskite-based oxynitrides are modified using an oxygen-evolution co-catalyst of CoPi, and provide a new dimension for enhancing the photoactivity of oxygen evolution in solar-assisted water-splitting reactions. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Filaments Production and Fused Deposition Modelling of ABS/Carbon Nanotubes Composites
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010049
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 13 January 2018 / Accepted: 15 January 2018 / Published: 18 January 2018
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Abstract
Composite acrylonitrile–butadiene–styrene (ABS)/carbon nanotubes (CNT) filaments at 1, 2, 4, 6 and 8 wt %, suitable for fused deposition modelling (FDM) were obtained by using a completely solvent-free process based on direct melt compounding and extrusion. The optimal CNT content in the filaments
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Composite acrylonitrile–butadiene–styrene (ABS)/carbon nanotubes (CNT) filaments at 1, 2, 4, 6 and 8 wt %, suitable for fused deposition modelling (FDM) were obtained by using a completely solvent-free process based on direct melt compounding and extrusion. The optimal CNT content in the filaments for FDM was found to be 6 wt %; for this composite, a detailed investigation of the thermal, mechanical and electrical properties was performed. Presence of CNT in ABS filaments and 3D-printed parts resulted in a significant enhancement of the tensile modulus and strength, accompanied by a reduction of the elongation at break. As documented by dynamic mechanical thermal analysis, the stiffening effect of CNTs in ABS is particularly pronounced at high temperatures. Besides, the presence of CNT in 3D-printed parts accounts for better creep and thermal dimensional stabilities of 3D-printed parts, accompanied by a reduction of the coefficient of thermal expansion). 3D-printed nanocomposite samples with 6 wt % of CNT exhibited a good electrical conductivity, even if lower than pristine composite filaments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Nanocomposites)
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Open AccessArticle Micro-Spherical Sulfur/Graphene Oxide Composite via Spray Drying for High Performance Lithium Sulfur Batteries
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010050
Received: 25 November 2017 / Revised: 31 December 2017 / Accepted: 16 January 2018 / Published: 18 January 2018
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Abstract
An efficient, industry-accepted spray drying method was used to synthesize micro-spherical sulfur/graphene oxide (S/GO) composites as cathode materials within lithium sulfur batteries. The as-designed wrapping of the sulfur-nanoparticles, with wrinkled GO composites, was characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy
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An efficient, industry-accepted spray drying method was used to synthesize micro-spherical sulfur/graphene oxide (S/GO) composites as cathode materials within lithium sulfur batteries. The as-designed wrapping of the sulfur-nanoparticles, with wrinkled GO composites, was characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The unique morphological design of this material enabled superior discharge capacity and cycling performance, demonstrating a high initial discharge capacity of 1400 mAh g−1 at 0.1 C. The discharge capacity remained at 828 mAh g−1 after 150 cycles. The superior electrochemical performance indicates that the S/GO composite improves electrical conductivity and alleviates the shuttle effect. This study represents the first time such a facile spray drying method has been adopted for lithium sulfur batteries and used in the fabrication of S/GO composites. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Fatty Acid Based Microemulsions to Combat Ophthalmia Neonatorum Caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Staphylococcus aureus
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010051
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 5 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 January 2018 / Published: 19 January 2018
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Abstract
The bacterial species Neisseria gonorrhoeae (N. gonorrhoeae) and Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) are amongst the main microorganisms that cause ophthalmia neonatorum. The current treatment involves the use of various antibiotics such as ciprofloxacin, cephalosporin, ceftriaxone and cefotaxime. However, this
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The bacterial species Neisseria gonorrhoeae (N. gonorrhoeae) and Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) are amongst the main microorganisms that cause ophthalmia neonatorum. The current treatment involves the use of various antibiotics such as ciprofloxacin, cephalosporin, ceftriaxone and cefotaxime. However, this treatment strategy is becoming more ineffective due to the antibiotic resistance in N. gonorrhoeae. The current study explores the potential use of fatty acid based microemulsions (ME) to prevent N. gonorrhoeae and S. aureus infections in new-borns’ eyes without harmful side effects such as corneal or conjunctiva irritation. Pseudo-ternary phase diagrams were constructed to evaluate microemulsion regions and six different α-linolenic acid based microemulsions were prepared. The prepared formulations were characterized for α-linolenic acid content, size, transparency, zeta potential, Polarized light Microscopy, antimicrobial activity and ex vivo ocular toxicity. The mean droplet size of the ME formulations was in the range of 190.4 to 350.5 nm and polydispersity index (PDI) values were in the range of 0.102 to 0.561. All formulations were found stable upon storage for at least 8 weeks. In addition, self-diffusion coefficients determined by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) reflected that the diffusability of water increased at higher than 30% w/w water, while that of fatty acids and surfactants was in reverse. The antimicrobial efficacy of microemulsions was determined against N. gonorrhoeae and S. aureus. It was concluded that all microemulsions have strong antimicrobial effects against N. gonorrhoeae and S. aureus. Finally, bovine corneal opacity permeability (BCOP) and hen’s egg chorioallantoic (HET-CAM) tests results showed that all microemulsion formulations were not strong ocular irritants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applications of Microemulsions in Biomedical Research)
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Open AccessArticle Preparation of High Mechanical Performance Nano-Fe3O4/Wood Fiber Binderless Composite Boards for Electromagnetic Absorption via a Facile and Green Method
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010052
Received: 24 December 2017 / Revised: 16 January 2018 / Accepted: 17 January 2018 / Published: 21 January 2018
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Abstract
Fe3O4/wood fiber composites are prepared with a green mechanical method using only distilled water as a solvent without any chemical agents, and then a binderless composite board with high mechanical properties is obtained via a hot-press for electromagnetic (EM)
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Fe3O4/wood fiber composites are prepared with a green mechanical method using only distilled water as a solvent without any chemical agents, and then a binderless composite board with high mechanical properties is obtained via a hot-press for electromagnetic (EM) absorption. The fibers are connected by hydrogen bonds after being mechanically pretreated, and Fe3O4 nanoparticles (NPs) are attached to the fiber surface through physical adsorption. The composite board is bonded by an adhesive, which is provided by the reaction of fiber composition under high temperature and pressure. The Nano-Fe3O4/Fiber (NFF) binderless composite board shows remarkable microwave absorption properties and high mechanical strength. The optional reflection loss (RL) of the as-prepared binderless composite board is −31.90 dB. The bending strength of the NFF binderless composite board is 36.36 MPa with the addition of 6% nano-Fe3O4, the modulus of elasticity (MOE) is 6842.16 MPa, and the internal bond (IB) strength is 0.81 MPa. These results demonstrate that magnetic nanoparticles are deposited in binderless composite board by hot pressing, which is the easiest way to produce high mechanical strength and EM absorbers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Green Synthesis, Characterization and Application of Proanthocyanidins-Functionalized Gold Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010053
Received: 21 December 2017 / Revised: 16 January 2018 / Accepted: 16 January 2018 / Published: 21 January 2018
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Abstract
Green synthesis of gold nanoparticles using plant extracts is one of the more promising approaches for obtaining environmentally friendly nanomaterials for biological applications and environmental remediation. In this study, proanthocyanidins-functionalized gold nanoparticles were synthesized via a hydrothermal method. The obtained gold nanoparticles were
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Green synthesis of gold nanoparticles using plant extracts is one of the more promising approaches for obtaining environmentally friendly nanomaterials for biological applications and environmental remediation. In this study, proanthocyanidins-functionalized gold nanoparticles were synthesized via a hydrothermal method. The obtained gold nanoparticles were characterized by ultraviolet and visible spectrophotometry (UV-Vis), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) measurements. UV-Vis and FTIR results indicated that the obtained products were mainly spherical in shape, and that the phenolic hydroxyl of proanthocyanidins had strong interactions with the gold surface. TEM and XRD determination revealed that the synthesized gold nanoparticles had a highly crystalline structure and good monodispersity. The application of proanthocyanidins-functionalized gold nanoparticles for the removal of dyes and heavy metal ions Ni2+, Cu2+, Cd2+ and Pb2+ in an aqueous solution was investigated. The primary results indicate that proanthocyanidins-functionalized gold nanoparticles had high removal rates for the heavy metal ions and dye, which implies that they have potential applications as a new kind of adsorbent for the removal of contaminants in aqueous solution. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Au and Ag Nanoparticles. Breakthroughs and Perspectives
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010011
Received: 25 October 2017 / Revised: 27 November 2017 / Accepted: 19 December 2017 / Published: 27 December 2017
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Abstract
This review provides a broad look on the recent investigations on the synthesis, characterization and physico-chemical properties of noble metal nanoparticles, mainly gold and silver nanoparticles, stabilized with ligands of different chemical nature. A comprehensive review of the available literature in this field
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This review provides a broad look on the recent investigations on the synthesis, characterization and physico-chemical properties of noble metal nanoparticles, mainly gold and silver nanoparticles, stabilized with ligands of different chemical nature. A comprehensive review of the available literature in this field may be far too large and only some selected representative examples will be reported here, together with some recent achievements from our group, that will be discussed in more detail. Many efforts in finding synthetic routes have been performed so far to achieve metal nanoparticles with well-defined size, morphology and stability in different environments, to match the large variety of applications that can be foreseen for these materials. In particular, the synthesis and stabilization of gold and silver nanoparticles together with their properties in different emerging fields of nanomedicine, optics and sensors are reviewed and briefly commented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Noble Metal Nanoparticles in Catalysis)
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Open AccessReview Covalent Organic Frameworks: From Materials Design to Biomedical Application
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010015
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 21 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 28 December 2017
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Abstract
Covalent organic frameworks (COFs) are newly emerged crystalline porous polymers with well-defined skeletons and nanopores mainly consisted of light-weight elements (H, B, C, N and O) linked by dynamic covalent bonds. Compared with conventional materials, COFs possess some unique and attractive features, such
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Covalent organic frameworks (COFs) are newly emerged crystalline porous polymers with well-defined skeletons and nanopores mainly consisted of light-weight elements (H, B, C, N and O) linked by dynamic covalent bonds. Compared with conventional materials, COFs possess some unique and attractive features, such as large surface area, pre-designable pore geometry, excellent crystallinity, inherent adaptability and high flexibility in structural and functional design, thus exhibiting great potential for various applications. Especially, their large surface area and tunable porosity and π conjugation with unique photoelectric properties will enable COFs to serve as a promising platform for drug delivery, bioimaging, biosensing and theranostic applications. In this review, we trace the evolution of COFs in terms of linkages and highlight the important issues on synthetic method, structural design, morphological control and functionalization. And then we summarize the recent advances of COFs in the biomedical and pharmaceutical sectors and conclude with a discussion of the challenges and opportunities of COFs for biomedical purposes. Although currently still at its infancy stage, COFs as an innovative source have paved a new way to meet future challenges in human healthcare and disease theranostic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessReview Lipid-Based Nanoparticles as a Potential Delivery Approach in the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010042
Received: 24 November 2017 / Revised: 10 January 2018 / Accepted: 12 January 2018 / Published: 15 January 2018
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Abstract
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a chronic and joint-related autoimmune disease, results in immune dysfunction and destruction of joints and cartilages. Small molecules and biological therapies have been applied in a wide variety of inflammatory disorders, but their utility as a therapeutic agent is limited
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Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a chronic and joint-related autoimmune disease, results in immune dysfunction and destruction of joints and cartilages. Small molecules and biological therapies have been applied in a wide variety of inflammatory disorders, but their utility as a therapeutic agent is limited by poor absorption, rapid metabolism, and serious side effects. To improve these limitations, nanoparticles, which are capable of encapsulating and protecting drugs from degradation before they reach the target site in vivo, may serve as drug delivery systems. The present research proposes a platform for different lipid nanoparticle approaches for RA therapy, taking advantage of the newly emerging field of lipid nanoparticles to develop a targeted theranostic system for application in the treatment of RA. This review aims to present the recent major application of lipid nanoparticles that provide a biocompatible and biodegradable delivery system to effectively improve RA targeting over free drugs via the presentation of tissue-specific targeting of ligand-controlled drug release by modulating nanoparticle composition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessReview Recent Advances of Rare-Earth Ion Doped Luminescent Nanomaterials in Perovskite Solar Cells
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010043
Received: 19 December 2017 / Revised: 12 January 2018 / Accepted: 12 January 2018 / Published: 15 January 2018
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Abstract
Organic-inorganic lead halide based perovskite solar cells have received broad interest due to their merits of low fabrication cost, a low temperature solution process, and high energy conversion efficiencies. Rare-earth (RE) ion doped nanomaterials can be used in perovskite solar cells to expand
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Organic-inorganic lead halide based perovskite solar cells have received broad interest due to their merits of low fabrication cost, a low temperature solution process, and high energy conversion efficiencies. Rare-earth (RE) ion doped nanomaterials can be used in perovskite solar cells to expand the range of absorption spectra and improve the stability due to its upconversion and downconversion effect. This article reviews recent progress in using RE-ion-doped nanomaterials in mesoporous electrodes, perovskite active layers, and as an external function layer of perovskite solar cells. Finally, we discuss the challenges facing the effective use of RE-ion-doped nanomaterials in perovskite solar cells and present some prospects for future research. Full article
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Open AccessCorrection Correction: Dierking, Ingo and Al-Zangana, Shakhawan. Lyotropic Liquid Crystal Phases from Anisotropic Nanomaterials. Nanomaterials 2017, 7, 305
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(1), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8010045
Received: 27 December 2017 / Revised: 2 January 2018 / Accepted: 2 January 2018 / Published: 15 January 2018
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Abstract
Due to an oversight during production, the authors wish to make the following correction to reference [65] of this paper [...]
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials in Liquid Crystals)
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