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THE ROLE OF ION TRANSFER IN NANODROPLET-MEDIATED ELECTRODEPOSITION

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THE ROLE OF ION TRANSFER IN NANODROPLET-MEDIATED ELECTRODEPOSITION

thesis
posted on 2023-09-05, 17:27 authored by Joshua Reyes MoralesJoshua Reyes Morales

Nanoparticles have seen immense development in the past several decades due to their intriguing physicochemical properties. The modern chemist is interested not only in methods of synthesizing nanoparticles with tunable properties but also in the chemistry that nanoparticles can drive. While several methods exist to synthesize nanoparticles, it is often advantageous to put nanoparticles on a variety of conductive substrates for multiple applications (such as energy storage and conversion). Despite enjoying over 200 years of development, the electrodeposition of nanoparticles suffers from a lack of control over nanoparticle size and morphology. Understanding that structure-function studies are imperative to understand the chemistry of nanoparticles, new methods are necessary to electrodeposit a variety of nanoparticles with control over macro-morphology but also microstructure. When a nanodroplet full of a metal salt precursor is incident on the electrode biased sufficiently negative to drive electroplating, nanoparticles form at a shocking rate (on the order of microseconds to milliseconds). We start with the general nuts-and-bolts of the experiment (nanodroplet formation and methods for electrodeposition). The deposition of new nanomaterials often requires one to develop new methods of measurement, and we detail new measurement tools for quantifying nanoparticle porosity and nanopore tortuosity within single nanodroplets. Owing to the small size of the nanodroplets and fast mass transfer, the use of nanodroplets also allows the electrodeposition of high entropy alloy nanoparticles at room temperature. Electrodeposition in aqueous nanodroplets can also be combined with stochastic electrochemistry for a variety of interesting studies. We detail the quantification of the growth kinetics of single nanoparticles in single aqueous nanodroplets. Nanodroplets can also be used as tiny reactors to trap only a few molecules, and the reactivity of those molecules can be electrochemically probed and evaluated with time. Overall, this burgeoning synthetic tool is providing unexpected avenues of tunability of metal nanoparticles on conductive substrates. Moreover, there is little understanding of how ion transfer can affect the fundamental of nanoparticle synthesis with nanodroplet-mediated electrodeposition. This thesis details different experiments performed to study the role of ion transfer during the nucleation and growth of nanoparticles.

History

Degree Type

  • Doctor of Philosophy

Department

  • Chemistry

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Jeffrey E. Dick

Additional Committee Member 2

Christina Li

Additional Committee Member 3

Chi Zhang

Additional Committee Member 4

Julia Laskin