Special Issue "Solution Synthesis, Processing, and Applications of Semiconducting Nanomaterials"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Julia W. P. Hsu

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: emergent photovoltaics; solution synthesis of inorganic nanostructures; interfacial phenomena between dissimilar materials; growth and properties of lattice-mismatched semiconductors; scanning probe microscopy and spectroscopy; semiconductor defect characterization; oxide catalysts for NO oxidation; superconductivity; metal-insulator transition; proximity effect

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Semiconducting nanomaterials synthesized using solution methods have played important roles in a wide variety of electronic and optical applications, such as solar cells (SCs), light emitting diodes (LEDs), photodetectors, and sensors. The frontiers in synthesis include new compounds, reducing the size of nanomaterials, increasing the crystallinity of nanocrystals, alternative green synthesis methods to reduce waste and energy, and surface functionalization and characterization. Furthermore, great challenges are encountered in processing nanomaterials from suspensions to uniform thin films on different substrates for optoelectronic device applications. While many publications focus on synthesis and applications of solution-based nanomaterials, issues related to processing, e.g., solvent choice, surface compositions and ligands, and deposition methods, are addressed infrequently. This Special Issue solicits submissions on processing of solution-based semiconducting nanomaterials in addition to their synthesis and applications.

Prof. Julia W. P. Hsu
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nanomaterials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Solution synthesis
  • Nanomaterials
  • Oxides
  • Semiconductors
  • Surface composition and ligands
  • Solution processing of films
  • Film optical and electronic properties
  • Green methods for synthesis and processing

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
High-Sensitive Ammonia Sensors Based on Tin Monoxide Nanoshells
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030388
Received: 16 January 2019 / Revised: 19 February 2019 / Accepted: 20 February 2019 / Published: 7 March 2019
PDF Full-text (2377 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Ammonia (NH3) is a harmful gas contaminant that is part of the nitrogen cycle in our daily lives. Therefore, highly sensitive ammonia sensors are important for environmental protection and human health. However, it is difficult to detect low concentrations of ammonia [...] Read more.
Ammonia (NH3) is a harmful gas contaminant that is part of the nitrogen cycle in our daily lives. Therefore, highly sensitive ammonia sensors are important for environmental protection and human health. However, it is difficult to detect low concentrations of ammonia (≤50 ppm) using conventional means at room temperature. Tin monoxide (SnO), a member of IV–VI metal monoxides, has attracted much attention due to its low cost, environmental-friendly nature, and higher stability compared with other non-oxide ammonia sensing material like alkaline metal or polymer, which made this material an ideal alternative for ammonia sensor applications. In this work, we fabricated high-sensitive ammonia sensors based on self-assembly SnO nanoshells via a solution method and annealing under 300 °C for 1 h. The as fabricated sensors exhibited the response of 313%, 874%, 2757%, 3116%, and 3757% (∆G/G) under ammonia concentration of 5 ppm, 20 ppm, 50 ppm, 100 ppm, and 200 ppm, respectively. The structure of the nanoshells, which have curved shells that provide shelters for the core and also possess a large surface area, is able to absorb more ammonia molecules, leading to further improvements in the sensitivity. Further, the SnO nanoshells have higher oxygen vacancy densities compared with other metal oxide ammonia sensing materials, enabling it to have higher performance. Additionally, the selectivity of ammonia sensors is also outstanding. We hope this work will provide a reference for the study of similar structures and applications of IV–VI metal monoxides in the gas sensor field. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Fabrication of Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) Nanoparticle Inks for Growth of CZTS Films for Solar Cells
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 336; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030336
Received: 8 January 2019 / Revised: 23 February 2019 / Accepted: 24 February 2019 / Published: 2 March 2019
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3515 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) is a promising candidate material for photovoltaic applications; hence, ecofriendly methods are required to fabricate CZTS films. In this work, we fabricated CZTS nanocrystal inks by a wet ball milling method, with the use of only nontoxic solvents, [...] Read more.
Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) is a promising candidate material for photovoltaic applications; hence, ecofriendly methods are required to fabricate CZTS films. In this work, we fabricated CZTS nanocrystal inks by a wet ball milling method, with the use of only nontoxic solvents, followed by filtration. We performed centrifugation to screen the as-milled CZTS and obtain nanocrystals. The distribution of CZTS nanoparticles during centrifugation was examined and nanocrystal inks were obtained after the final centrifugal treatment. The as-fabricated CZTS nanocrystal inks were used to deposit CZTS precursors with precisely controlled CZTS films by a spin-coating method followed by a rapid high pressure sulfur annealing method. Both the grain growth and crystallinity of the CZTS films were promoted and the composition was adjusted from S poor to S-rich by the annealing. XRD and Raman characterization showed no secondary phases in the annealed film, the absence of the detrimental phases. A solar cell efficiency of 6.2% (open circuit voltage: Voc = 633.3 mV, short circuit current: Jsc = 17.6 mA/cm2, and fill factor: FF = 55.8%) with an area of 0.2 cm2 was achieved based on the annealed CZTS film as the absorber layer. Full article
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Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Suitability of Copper Nitride as a Wiring Ink Sintered by Low-Energy Intense Pulsed Light Irradiation
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(8), 617; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8080617
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 August 2018 / Published: 14 August 2018
PDF Full-text (2224 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Copper nitride particles have a low decomposition temperature, they absorb light, and are oxidation-resistant, making them potentially useful for the development of novel wiring inks for printing circuit boards by means of intense pulsed light (IPL) sintering at low-energy. Here, we compared the [...] Read more.
Copper nitride particles have a low decomposition temperature, they absorb light, and are oxidation-resistant, making them potentially useful for the development of novel wiring inks for printing circuit boards by means of intense pulsed light (IPL) sintering at low-energy. Here, we compared the thermal decomposition and light absorption of copper materials, including copper nitride (Cu3N), copper(I) oxide (Cu2O), or copper(II) oxide (CuO). Among the copper compounds examined, copper nitride had the second highest light absorbency and lowest decomposition temperature; therefore, we concluded that copper nitride was the most suitable material for producing a wiring ink that is sintered by means of IPL irradiation. Wiring inks containing copper nitride were compared with those of wiring inks containing copper nitride, copper(I) oxide, or copper(II) oxide, and copper conversion rate and sheet resistance were also determined. Under low-energy irradiation (8.3 J cm−2), copper nitride was converted to copper at the highest rate among the copper materials, and provided a sheet resistance of 0.506 Ω sq−1, indicating that copper nitride is indeed a candidate material for development as a wiring ink for low-energy intense pulsed light sintering-based printed circuit board production processes. Full article
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Graphical abstract

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Stereocomplex Crystallization of Polylactide Prompted by One-Dimensional Nanofillers Studied by Molecular Simulations
Author: Yijing Nie
Affiliation: Jiangsu University,[email protected]
Abstract: Dynamic Monte Carlo simulations were performed to investigate the stereocomplex crystallization of polylactide promoted by one-dimensional nanofillers. The presence of the nanofillers can effectively facilitate the formation of stereocomplex crystallites in poly(l-lactide)/poly(d-lactide) blend. The increase of the content of the nanofillers can further lead to the increase in the fraction of stereocomplex crystallites. The enhancement in the stereocomplex formation can be attributed to the heterogeneous nucleation of polylactide chains on the filler surface. The nanofillers can absorb both poly(l-lactide) and poly(d-lactide) chains under the effect of interfacial interactions. In the interfacial regions the blend has better miscibility, and thus stereocomplex crystallites are easier to form during heterogeneous nucleation.

Title: Enhanced Moisture and Thermal Stability in Perovskite Solar Cells Spray-Coated with Polystyrene
Author: James Gardner
Affiliation: KTH Royal Institute of Tecknology and Sweden; [email protected]
Abstract: The major challenge for the future commercialization of hybrid perovskite solar cells (PSCs) is that the device stability is not competitive with the benchmark silicon technology. In this study, we show PSCs with dramatically improved stability deriving from efficient water and moisture screening by using a solution-processed, fast, and cheap technique. Both mixed-cation, mixed-halide [(CH(NH2)2PbI3)0.85(CH3NH3PbBr3)0.15] and pure (CH3NH3PbI3) perovskite solar cells showed remarkable stability towards water and moisture when spray-coated with a polystyrene film. The spray-coated devices retain ∼90% of their original efficiency after 20 hours in water while the devices without protection fully degraded within 10 minutes. Furthermore, polystyrene-coated perovskite films heated overnight up to 95 oC display exceptional thermal resistance, while pure perovskite devices show a significantly increased light stability.

 

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