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Nano Research

Article Title

Understanding the stability and reactivity of ultrathin tellurium nanowires in solution: An emerging platform for chemical transformation and material design

Authors

Liang Xu, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Hai-Wei Liang, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Hui-Hui Li, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Kai Wang, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Yuan Yang, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Lu-Ting Song, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Xu Wang, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Shu-Hong Yu, Division of Nanomaterials and Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China

Keywords

stability, reactivity, oxidation, reaction kinetics, chemical transformation, storage, ultrathin nanowires

Abstract

The stability and reactivity of nanomaterials are of crucial importance for their application, but the long-term effects of stability and reactivity of nanomaterials under practical conditions are still not well understood. In this study, we first established a comprehensive strategy to investigate the stability of a highly reactive nanomaterial from the viewpoint of reaction kinetics with ultrathin tellurium nanowires (TeNWs) as a model material in aqueous solution through an accelerated oxidation process. This allowed us to propose a new approach for the design and synthesis of other unique one-dimensional nanostructures by a chemical transformation process using the intermediate nanostructures “captured” during the dynamic oxidation process under different conditions. In essence, the oxidation of ultrathin TeNWs is a gas–solid reaction which involves liquid, gas and solid phases. It has been demonstrated that the oxidation process of ultrathin TeNWs in aqueous solution can be divided into three stages, namely oxygen limiting, ultrathin TeNWs limiting and mass transfer resistance limiting stages. The apparent oxidation kinetics for ultrathin TeNWs is approximately in accord with a first order reaction kinetics model and has an apparent activation energy as low as 13.53 kJ·mol–1, indicating that ultrathin TeNWs are thermodynamicallyunstable. However, the unstable nature of ultrathin TeNWs is actually an advantage since it can act as an excellent platform to help us synthesize and design one-dimensional functional nanomaterials—with special structures and distinctive properties—which are difficult to obtain by a direct synthesis method.

Graphical Abstract

Publisher

Tsinghua University Press

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