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Research Highlight | Materials Science Division

Resolving the atomic structure of sequential infiltration synthesis (SIS) derived inorganic clusters

In a study published in ACS Nano, researchers resolved the structural evolution of SIS-derived inorganic clusters.

Scientific Achievement

Synchrotron X-ray characterization reveals the structural evolution of inorganic cluster growth and crystallization that results from SIS in polymeric templates.

Significance and Impact

A new characterization approach provides fundamental insights into the electrical conductivity of nanoscale electrodes. New insights may afford an efficient route to 3D arrays of precise-atom-number clusters.

Research Details

  • The grazing incidence geometry used for X-ray total scattering pair distribution function (GI-PDF) overcomes long-standing challenges of achieving high-resolution PDF for thin films.
  • Even after annealing, In2O3 nanocrystal structures are shown to depend on synthesis conditions, offering new tunability.
  • This synthesis method has important applications in water treatment, lithography, separations, and optical coatings. 

Work was performed at Argonne National Laboratory.

DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.0c03848

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