Intermetallic nanocrystals are a large family of emerging materials with extensive applications in many fields. Yet, a generalized synthetic method for intermetallic nanocrystals is lacking. Here, we report the development of a colloidal synthesis method based on amalgamation of monometallic nanocrystal seeds with low–melting point metals. We use this approach to achieve crystalline and compositionally uniform intermetallic nanocrystals of Au-Ga, Ag-Ga, Cu-Ga, Ni-Ga, Pd-Ga, Pd-In, and Pd-Zn compounds. We demonstrate both compositional tunability across the phase spaces (e.g., AuGa2, AuGa, Au7Ga2, and Ga-doped Au), size tunability (e.g., 14.0-, 7.6-, and 3.8-nm AuGa2), and size uniformity (e.g., 5.4% size deviations). This approach makes it possible to systematically achieve size- and composition-controlled intermetallic nanocrystals, opening up a multitude of possibilities for these materials. Seed amalgamation reaction unlocks a large family of intermetallic nanocrystals with excellent size and composition control. Seed amalgamation reaction unlocks a large family of intermetallic nanocrystals with excellent size and composition control.
Van der Waals epitaxy provides a fertile playground for the monolithic integration of various materials for advanced electronics and optoelectronics. Here, a previously unidentified nanorod-assisted van der Waals epitaxy is developed and nearly single-crystalline GaN films are first grown on amorphous silica glass substrates using a graphene interfacial layer. The epitaxial GaN-based light-emitting diode structures, with a record internal quantum efficiency, can be readily lifted off, becoming large-size flexible devices. Without the effects of the potential field from a single-crystalline substrate, we expect this approach to be equally applicable for high-quality growth of nitrides on arbitrary substrates. Our work provides a revolutionary technology for the growth of high-quality semiconductors, thus enabling the hetero-integration of highly mismatched material systems. The heteroepitaxy of nitride semiconductors can be achieved without needing lattice matching between two material systems. The heteroepitaxy of nitride semiconductors can be achieved without needing lattice matching between two material systems.
Second-harmonic generation is of paramount importance in several fields of science and technology, including frequency conversion, self-referencing of frequency combs, nonlinear spectroscopy and pulse characterization. Advanced functionalities are enabled by modulation of the harmonic generation efficiency, which can be achieved with electrical or all-optical triggers. Electrical control of the harmonic generation efficiency offers large modulation depth at the cost of low switching speed, by contrast to all-optical nonlinear devices, which provide high speed and low modulation depth. Here we demonstrate all-optical modulation of second-harmonic generation in MoS2 with a modulation depth of close to 100% and speed limited only by the fundamental pulse duration. This result arises from a combination of D3h crystal symmetry and the deep subwavelength thickness of the sample, it can therefore be extended to the whole family of transition metal dichalcogenides to provide great flexibility in the design of advanced nonlinear optical devices such as high-speed integrated frequency converters, broadband autocorrelators for ultrashort pulse characterization, and tunable nanoscale holograms.
Nature controls the assembly of complex architectures through self-limiting processes; however, few artificial strategies to mimic these processes have been reported to date. Here we demonstrate a system comprising two types of nanocrystal (NC), where the self-limiting assembly of one NC component controls the aggregation of the other. Our strategy uses semiconducting InP/ZnS core–shell NCs (3 nm) as effective assembly modulators and functional nanoparticle surfactants in cucurbit[n]uril-triggered aggregation of AuNCs (5–60 nm), allowing the rapid formation (within seconds) of colloidally stable hybrid aggregates. The resultant assemblies efficiently harvest light within the semiconductor substructures, inducing out-of-equilibrium electron transfer processes, which can now be simultaneously monitored through the incorporated surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy–active plasmonic compartments. Spatial confinement of electron mediators (for example, methyl viologen (MV2+)) within the hybrids enables the direct observation of photogenerated radical species as well as molecular recognition in real time, providing experimental evidence for the formation of elusive σ–(MV+)2 dimeric species. This approach paves the way for widespread use of analogous hybrids for the long-term real-time tracking of interfacial charge transfer processes, such as the light-driven generation of radicals and catalysis with operando spectroscopies under irreversible conditions.
In 2013 the European Union (EU) embarked on one of its three largest-ever targeted technology R&D programs, a 10-year, €1 billion ($1.18 billion) program called the Graphene Flagship, with the aim of creating applications and markets for the two-dimensional material and establishing Europe at the forefront of the technology. Ultimately, its impact and whether it has been worth the public spending and effort won’t be known for years to come. “Over the past seven years, the Graphene Flagship has successfully brought graphene out of the lab, creating a fruitful European industrial ecosystem that develops applications of graphene and layered materials,” says the flagship’s 2020 annual report. “Today, our industrial family includes over 100 companies working together with the Graphene Flagship’s academic partners in fields ranging from the automotive and aviation industries to electronics, energy, composites and biomedicine.”
Voltage control of magnetic order is desirable for spintronic device applications, but 180° magnetization switching is not straightforward because electric fields do not break time-reversal symmetry. Ferrimagnets are promising candidates for 180° switching owing to a multi-sublattice configuration with opposing magnetic moments of different magnitudes. In this study we used solid-state hydrogen gating to control the ferrimagnetic order in rare earth–transition metal thin films dynamically. Electric field-induced hydrogen loading/unloading in GdCo can shift the magnetic compensation temperature by more than 100 K, which enables control of the dominant magnetic sublattice. X-ray magnetic circular dichroism measurements and ab initio calculations indicate that the magnetization control originates from the weakening of antiferromagnetic exchange coupling that reduces the magnetization of Gd more than that of Co upon hydrogenation. We observed reversible, gate voltage-induced net magnetization switching and full 180° Néel vector reversal in the absence of external magnetic fields. Furthermore, we generated ferrimagnetic spin textures, such as chiral domain walls and skyrmions, in racetrack devices through hydrogen gating. With gating times as short as 50 μs and endurance of more than 10,000 cycles, our method provides a powerful means to tune ferrimagnetic spin textures and dynamics, with broad applicability in the rapidly emerging field of ferrimagnetic spintronics.
Subwavelength electromagnetic field localization has been central to photonic research in the last decade, allowing us to enhance sensing capabilities as well as increase the coupling between photons and material excitations. The strong and ultrastrong light–matter coupling regime in the terahertz range using split-ring resonators coupled to magnetoplasmons has been widely investigated, achieving successive world records for the largest light–matter coupling ever achieved. Ever shrinking resonators have allowed us to approach the regime of few-electron strong coupling, in which single-dipole properties can be modified by the vacuum field. Here, we demonstrate, theoretically and experimentally, the existence of a limit to the possibility of arbitrarily increasing electromagnetic confinement in polaritonic systems. Strongly subwavelength fields can excite a continuum of high-momenta propagative magnetoplasmons. This leads to peculiar nonlocal polaritonic effects, as certain polaritonic features disappear and the system enters the regime of discrete-to-continuum strong coupling.
Evaluated nuclear structure and decay data for all nuclei with mass number A=201 (201Os, 201Ir, 201Pt, 201Au, 201Hg, 201Tl, 201Pb, 201Bi, 201Po, 201At, 201Rn, 201Fr, 201Ra) are presented. All available experimental data are compiled and evaluated, and best values for level and gamma-ray energies, quantum numbers, lifetimes, gamma-ray intensities and transition probabilities, as well as other nuclear properties, are recommended. Inconsistencies and discrepancies that exist in the literature are discussed. A number of computer codes (https://wwwnds. iaea.org/public/ensdf pgm/index.htm) developed by members of the NSDD network were used during the evaluation process. For example, the reported absolute gamma-ray emission probabilities and their uncertainties in various decay data sets were determined using the GABS code. The gamma-ray transition probabilities were determined using the RULER code and the corresponding uncertainties were determined using a Monte-Carlo approach. This work supersedes the earlier evaluation by F.G. Kondev (2007Ko06), published in Nuclear Data Sheets 108, 365 (2007).
Thermoelectric materials generate electric energy from waste heat, with conversion efficiency governed by the dimensionless figure of merit, ZT. Single-crystal tin selenide (SnSe) was discovered to exhibit a high ZT of roughly 2.2–2.6 at 913 K, but more practical and deployable polycrystal versions of the same compound suffer from much poorer overall ZT, thereby thwarting prospects for cost-effective lead-free thermoelectrics. The poor polycrystal bulk performance is attributed to traces of tin oxides covering the surface of SnSe powders, which increases thermal conductivity, reduces electrical conductivity and thereby reduces ZT. Here, we report that hole-doped SnSe polycrystalline samples with reagents carefully purified and tin oxides removed exhibit an ZT of roughly 3.1 at 783 K. Its lattice thermal conductivity is ultralow at roughly 0.07 W m–1 K–1 at 783 K, lower than the single crystals. The path to ultrahigh thermoelectric performance in polycrystalline samples is the proper removal of the deleterious thermally conductive oxides from the surface of SnSe grains. These results could open an era of high-performance practical thermoelectrics from this high-performance material.
Nanostructured birnessite exhibits high specific capacitance and nearly ideal capacitive behaviour in aqueous electrolytes, rendering it an important electrode material for low-cost, high-power energy storage devices. The mechanism of electrochemical capacitance in birnessite has been described as both Faradaic (involving redox) and non-Faradaic (involving only electrostatic interactions). To clarify the capacitive mechanism, we characterized birnessite’s response to applied potential using ex situ X-ray diffraction, electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance, in situ Raman spectroscopy and operando atomic force microscope dilatometry to provide a holistic understanding of its structural, gravimetric and mechanical responses. These observations are supported by atomic-scale simulations using density functional theory for the cation-intercalated structure of birnessite, ReaxFF reactive force field-based molecular dynamics and ReaxFF-based grand canonical Monte Carlo simulations on the dynamics at the birnessite–water–electrolyte interface. We show that capacitive charge storage in birnessite is governed by interlayer cation intercalation. We conclude that the intercalation appears capacitive due to the presence of nanoconfined interlayer structural water, which mediates the interaction between the intercalated cation and the birnessite host and leads to minimal structural changes.