Nanomaterials are increasingly gaining the attention of not only the scientific community, but also the public due to their unique properties which endear them to new and exciting applications. These special properties can vary markedly from those of the analogous bulk materials. The physical and chemical properties of the nanomaterials tend to be exceptionally closely dependent on their size and shape or morphology. As a result, materials scientists are focusing their efforts on developing simple and effective methods for fabricating nanomaterials with controlled size and morphology and hence, tailoring their properties.
In this paper published in AZojomo*, Pennsylvania State University researchers Qingyi Lu, Feng Gao, Dongsheng Li and Sridhar Komarneni, synthesized and characterized nanomaterials of controlled size and shape. These materials have potential to be used in several different applications including interconnects in electronic devices with super functions and bio-molecule separations. The methods they employed included the microwave-assisted solvothermal or biomolecule-assisted hydrothermal methods.
By altering the synthesis methods, the researchers were able to create a range of different nanoparticles. These synthesized nanomaterials varied from uniformly sized spherical nanoparticles, nanowires, nanorods to arrays with oriented mesochannels.
The study shows that conventional and microwave assisted hydro or solvothermal methods are highly suited for the synthesis of nanomaterials of controlled size and shape under environmentally benign conditions for arrange of different applications.