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Nanomaterials, Volume 12, Issue 10 (May-2 2022) – 168 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): An ecofriendly polymer, which does not contain toxic nitrogen and halogen elements, is first applied as a bifunctional template to synthesize a hierarchical MFI zeolite with an unusually high Al content (Si/Al = 8). The polymer not only serves as a template for constructing the hierarchical micro/mesoporous structure of the MFI zeolite, but also acts as a crystal growth modifier to form a single-crystalline zeolite. The resultant zeolite, owing to its high acid strength, unique single-crystalline structure, and hierarchical porosities, shows a remarkably higher catalytic activity in converting waste plastic into hydrocarbons compared to a commercial one. View this paper
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Article
New Insights on the Spin Glass Behavior in Ferrites Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1782; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101782 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 462
Abstract
The magnetic properties of nanocrystalline MxFe3−xO4 ferrites with M=Fe, Co, and Zn were investigated. The data support a core–shell model, where the core is ferrimagnetically ordered, and the shell shows a spin glass type behavior. The reduced magnetizations [...] Read more.
The magnetic properties of nanocrystalline MxFe3−xO4 ferrites with M=Fe, Co, and Zn were investigated. The data support a core–shell model, where the core is ferrimagnetically ordered, and the shell shows a spin glass type behavior. The reduced magnetizations of spin glass components follow an mg = (1 – b/H−1/2) field dependence. The b values are strongly correlated with the intensities of exchange interactions. The field dependences of the magnetoresistances of Fe3O4 and ZnxFe3−xO4 nanoparticles pellets, experimentally determined, are well described if instead of the core reduced magnetization, commonly used, that of the shell is taken into account. For similar compositions of the nanoparticles, identical b values are obtained both from magnetization isotherms and magnetoresistances studies. The half-metallic behavior of spinel Fe3O4 based nanoparticles is discussed comparatively with those of double perovskites. Full article
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Article
Diffraction from Nanocrystal Superlattices
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1781; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101781 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 327
Abstract
Diffraction from a lattice of periodically spaced crystals is a topic of current interest because of the great development of self-organised superlattices (SL) of nanocrystals (NC). The self-organisation of NC into SL has theoretical interest, but especially a rich application prospect, as the [...] Read more.
Diffraction from a lattice of periodically spaced crystals is a topic of current interest because of the great development of self-organised superlattices (SL) of nanocrystals (NC). The self-organisation of NC into SL has theoretical interest, but especially a rich application prospect, as the coherent organisation has large effects on a wide range of material properties. Diffraction is a key method to understand the type and quality of SL ordering. Hereby, the characteristic diffraction signature of an SL of NC—together with the characteristic types of disorder—are theoretically explored. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Total Scattering Based Characterization Techniques for Nanostructures)
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Article
“Two Birds with One Stone”: F Doping Ni–Co Hydroxide as High-Performance Cathode Material for Aqueous Zn Batteries
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1780; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101780 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 406
Abstract
Cathode materials have impeded the development of aqueous Zn batteries (AZBs) for a long time due to their low capacity and poor cycling stability. Here, a “two birds with one stone” strategy is devised to optimize the Ni–Co hydroxide cathode material (NCH) for [...] Read more.
Cathode materials have impeded the development of aqueous Zn batteries (AZBs) for a long time due to their low capacity and poor cycling stability. Here, a “two birds with one stone” strategy is devised to optimize the Ni–Co hydroxide cathode material (NCH) for AZBs, which plays an essential role in both composition adjustment and morphology majorization. The F-doped Ni–Co hydroxide (FNCH) exhibits a unique nanoarray structure consisting of the 2D flake-like unit, furnishing abundant active sites for the redox reaction. A series of analyses prove that FNCH delivers improved electrical conductivity and enhanced electrochemical activity. Contributing to the unique morphology and adjusted characteristics, FNCH presents a higher discharge-specific capacity, more advantageous rate capability and competitive cycling stability than NCH. As a result, an aqueous Zn battery assembled with a FNCH cathode and Zn anode exhibits a high capacity of 0.23 mAh cm−2 at 1 mA cm−2, and retains 0.10 mAh cm−2 at 10 mA cm−2. More importantly, the FNCH–Zn battery demonstrates no capacity decay after 3000 cycles with a conspicuous capacity of 0.15 mAh cm−2 at 8 mA cm−2, indicating a superior cycling performance. This work provides a facile approach to develop high-performance cathodes for aqueous Zn batteries. Full article
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Article
Sensitive Detection of Industrial Pollutants Using Modified Electrochemical Platforms
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1779; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101779 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 432
Abstract
Water pollution is nowadays a global problem and the effective detection of pollutants is of fundamental importance. Herein, a facile, efficient, robust, and rapid (response time < 2 min) method for the determination of important quinone-based industrial pollutants such as hydroquinone and benzoquinone [...] Read more.
Water pollution is nowadays a global problem and the effective detection of pollutants is of fundamental importance. Herein, a facile, efficient, robust, and rapid (response time < 2 min) method for the determination of important quinone-based industrial pollutants such as hydroquinone and benzoquinone is reported. The recognition method is based on the use of screen-printed electrodes as sensing platforms, enhanced with carbon-based nanomaterials. The enhancement is achieved by modifying the working electrode of such platforms through highly sensitive membranes made of Single- or Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (SWNTs and MWNTs) or by graphene nanoplatelets. The modified sensing platforms are first carefully morphologically and electrochemically characterized, whereupon they are tested in the detection of different pollutants (i.e., hydroquinone and benzoquinone) in water solution, by using both cyclic and square-wave voltammetry. In particular, the sensors based on film-deposited nanomaterials show good sensitivity with a limit of detection in the nanomolar range (0.04 and 0.07 μM for SWNT- and MWNT-modified SPEs, respectively) and a linear working range of 10 to 1000 ppb under optimal conditions. The results highlight the improved performance of these novel sensing platforms and the large-scale applicability of this method for other analytes (i.e., toxins, pollutants). Full article
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Article
Fabrication of Enzyme-Free and Rapid Electrochemical Detection of Glucose Sensor Based on ZnO Rod and Ru Doped Carbon Nitride Modified Gold Transducer
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1778; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101778 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 417
Abstract
Over 3 in 4 adults with diabetes live in low- and middle-income counties and health expenditure also increased 316% over the last 15 years. In this regard, we fabricate low cost, reusable and rapid detection of diabetes sensor based on zinc oxide rod [...] Read more.
Over 3 in 4 adults with diabetes live in low- and middle-income counties and health expenditure also increased 316% over the last 15 years. In this regard, we fabricate low cost, reusable and rapid detection of diabetes sensor based on zinc oxide rod inserted ruthenium-doped carbon nitride (ZnO–g–Ru–C3N4) modified sensor device. Developed sensor device physically and electrochemically characterized using X-ray diffraction (XRD), fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), cyclic voltammetry (CV), chronoamperometry (CA) and differential pulse voltammetry (DPV). Sensing device as an effective enzyme-free glucose detection with high sensitivity (346 μA/mM/cm2) over the applied lower potential of +0.26 V (vs. Ag/AgCl), fast response (3 s) and broad linear range of (2–28) mM, coupled with a lower limit of detection (3.5 nM). The biosensing device gives better anti-interference ability with justifiable reproducibility, reusability (single electrode re-use 26 times in physiological buffer and 3 times in serum) and stability. Moreover, the real-time applicability of the sensor device was evaluated in human blood, serum and urine samples. Full article
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Article
Effect of Nanoparticles on the Thermal Stability and Reaction Kinetics in Ionic Nanofluids
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1777; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101777 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 343
Abstract
Nowadays, the incorporation of nanoparticles into thermal fluids has become one of the most suitable strategies for developing high-performance fluids. An unconventional improvement of thermo–physical properties was observed with the addition of 1% wt. of nanoparticles in different types of fluids, such as [...] Read more.
Nowadays, the incorporation of nanoparticles into thermal fluids has become one of the most suitable strategies for developing high-performance fluids. An unconventional improvement of thermo–physical properties was observed with the addition of 1% wt. of nanoparticles in different types of fluids, such as molten salts, allowing for the design of more thermally efficient systems using nanofluids. Despite this, there is a lack of knowledge about the effect that nanoparticles produce on the thermal stability and the decomposition kinetics of the base fluid. The present study performs IR- and UV-vis spectroscopy along with thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) of pure nitrate and nitrate based nanofluids with the presence of SiO2 and Al2O3 nanoparticles (1% wt.). The results obtained support that nanoparticles accelerate the nitrate to nitrite decomposition at temperatures below 500 °C (up to 4%), thus confirming the catalytic role of nanoparticles in nanofluids. Full article
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Communication
In-Situ Fabricating V2O5/TiO2-Carbon Heterojunction from Ti3C2 MXene as Highly Active Visible-Light Photocatalyst
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1776; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101776 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 385
Abstract
Titanium dioxide is a mainstream photocatalyst, but it still confronts great obstacles of poor visible light absorption and rapid recombination rate of photogenerated carriers. Herein, we describe the design of a highly active visible-light photocatalytic system of graphited carbon layers anchored V2 [...] Read more.
Titanium dioxide is a mainstream photocatalyst, but it still confronts great obstacles of poor visible light absorption and rapid recombination rate of photogenerated carriers. Herein, we describe the design of a highly active visible-light photocatalytic system of graphited carbon layers anchored V2O5/TiO2 heterojunctions derived from Ti3C2 MXene, which demonstrates about 4.58 and 2.79 times higher degradation activity of MB under visible light (λ > 420 nm) than pure V2O5 and TiO2-carbon. Combined with the characterization results, the formed V2O5/TiO2 heterojunction promotes the separation of photogenerated carriers, while the graphitized carbon derived from MXene acts as an electronic reservoir to enhance the absorption of visible light. The ESR results show that superoxide radicals and hydroxyl radicals are the main active species in the reaction system. Therefore, we propose a possible mechanism model to provide a feasible idea for the subsequent design of high-efficiency photocatalysts for environmental treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Photocatalysts Based on Nanomaterials)
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Editorial
Impact of Nanomaterials in Biological Systems and Applications in Nanomedicine Field
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1775; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101775 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 509
Abstract
The increasingly widespread use of engineered nanomaterials in many applications increases the need to understand the mechanisms behind their toxicity [...] Full article
Article
A First-Principles Study on the Electronic, Thermodynamic and Dielectric Properties of Monolayer Ca(OH)2 and Mg(OH)2
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1774; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101774 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 678
Abstract
We perform first-principles calculations to explore the electronic, thermodynamic and dielectric properties of two-dimensional (2D) layered, alkaline-earth hydroxides Ca(OH)2 and Mg(OH)2. We calculate the lattice parameters, exfoliation energies and phonon spectra of monolayers and also investigate the thermal properties of [...] Read more.
We perform first-principles calculations to explore the electronic, thermodynamic and dielectric properties of two-dimensional (2D) layered, alkaline-earth hydroxides Ca(OH)2 and Mg(OH)2. We calculate the lattice parameters, exfoliation energies and phonon spectra of monolayers and also investigate the thermal properties of these monolayers, such as the Helmholtz free energy, heat capacity at constant volume and entropy as a function of temperature. We employ Density Functional Perturbation Theory (DFPT) to calculate the in-plane and out-of-plane static dielectric constant of the bulk and monolayer samples. We compute the bandgap and electron affinity values using the HSE06 functional and estimate the leakage current density of transistors with monolayer Ca(OH)2 and Mg(OH)2 as dielectrics when combined with HfS2 and WS2, respectively. Our results show that bilayer Mg(OH)2 (EOT∼0.60 nm) with a lower solubility in water offers higher out-of-plane dielectric constants and lower leakage currents than does bilayer Ca(OH)2 (EOT∼0.56 nm). Additionally, the out-of-plane dielectric constant, leakage current and EOT of Mg(OH)2 outperform bilayer h-BN. We verify the applicability of Anderson’s rule and conclude that bilayers of Ca(OH)2 and Mg(OH)2, respectively, paired with lattice-matched monolayer HfS2 and WS2, are effective structural combinations that could lead to the development of innovative multi-functional Field Effect Transistors (FETs). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Two Dimensional Semiconductor Nanomaterials and Nanodevices)
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Review
Review for Rare-Earth-Modified Perovskite Materials and Optoelectronic Applications
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1773; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101773 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 506
Abstract
In recent years, rare-earth metals with triply oxidized state, lanthanide ions (Ln3+), have been demonstrated as dopants, which can efficiently improve the optical and electronic properties of metal halide perovskite materials. On the one hand, doping Ln3+ ions can convert [...] Read more.
In recent years, rare-earth metals with triply oxidized state, lanthanide ions (Ln3+), have been demonstrated as dopants, which can efficiently improve the optical and electronic properties of metal halide perovskite materials. On the one hand, doping Ln3+ ions can convert near-infrared/ultraviolet light into visible light through the process of up-/down-conversion and then the absorption efficiency of solar spectrum by perovskite solar cells can be significantly increased, leading to high device power conversion efficiency. On the other hand, multi-color light emissions and white light emissions originated from perovskite nanocrystals can be realized via inserting Ln3+ ions into the perovskite crystal lattice, which functioned as quantum cutting. In addition, doping or co-doping Ln3+ ions in perovskite films or devices can effectively facilitate perovskite film growth, tailor the energy band alignment and passivate the defect states, resulting in improved charge carrier transport efficiency or reduced nonradiative recombination. Finally, Ln3+ ions have also been used in the fields of photodetectors and luminescent solar concentrators. These indicate the huge potential of rare-earth metals in improving the perovskite optoelectronic device performances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Materials and Technologies in Nanogenerators)
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Article
Large-Scale Wideband Light-Trapping Black Silicon Textured by Laser Inducing Assisted with Laser Cleaning in Ambient Air
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1772; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101772 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 331
Abstract
Black silicon, which is an attractive material due to its optical properties, is prepared mainly by laser inducing in an SF6 atmosphere. Considering the effect of SF6 gas on the environment and human health, here we propose an efficient, economical, and [...] Read more.
Black silicon, which is an attractive material due to its optical properties, is prepared mainly by laser inducing in an SF6 atmosphere. Considering the effect of SF6 gas on the environment and human health, here we propose an efficient, economical, and green approach to process large-scale black silicon. In the wavelength range of 0.3–2.5 µm, the role of air could replace SF6 gas to texture black silicon by laser inducing with appropriate processing parameters. Then, to extend the working window of its excellent light-trapping status, laser-plasma shockwave cleaning was introduced to eliminate the deposition and improve the structures and morphology. The results revealed that the micro-nano structures became higher, denser, and more uniform with increasing cleaning times and deteriorating cleaning velocity, which compensated for the role of S atoms from the ambient SF6. Moreover, absorptance above 85% in the wavelength range of 0.3–15 µm was realized using our method. The effect of scanning pitch between adjacent rows on large-scale black silicon was also discussed. Our method realized the ultrahigh absorptance of large-scale black silicon fabricated in air from visible to mid-infrared, which is of significance in the field of optoelectronic devices. Full article
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Article
Stability Analysis of Unsteady Hybrid Nanofluid Flow over the Falkner-Skan Wedge
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1771; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101771 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 321
Abstract
Numerous manufacturing processes, including the drawing of plastic films, have a major impact on mass transport. These functionalities necessitate the solution of the Falkner–Skan equation and some of its configurations when applied to various geometries and boundary conditions. Hence, the current paper discusses [...] Read more.
Numerous manufacturing processes, including the drawing of plastic films, have a major impact on mass transport. These functionalities necessitate the solution of the Falkner–Skan equation and some of its configurations when applied to various geometries and boundary conditions. Hence, the current paper discusses the impact of unsteady hybrid nanofluid flow on a moving Falkner–Skan wedge with a convective boundary condition. This problem is modeled by partial differential equations, which are then converted into ordinary (similar) differential equations using appropriate similarity transformations. The bvp4c technique in MATLAB solves these ordinary differential equations numerically. Since more than one solution is possible in this paper, stability analysis is conducted. Thus, it is found that only one stable solution is identified as reliable (physically realizable in practice). The skin friction coefficient and heat transfer rate, along with the velocity and temperature profile distributions, are examined to determine the values of several parameters. The findings reveal that dual-type nanoparticles and wedge angle parameters improve thermal efficiency. A lower value of the unsteadiness parameter reduces the efficiency of hybrid nanofluids in terms of heat transfer and skin friction coefficient, whereas increasing the Biot number of the working fluid does not affect the critical point in the current analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Theory and Computational Model of Nanofluids)
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Article
H2O2/Glucose Sensor Based on a Pyrroloquinoline Skeleton-Containing Molecule Modified Gold Cavity Array Electrode
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1770; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101770 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 303
Abstract
H2O2-related metabolites are essential indicators in clinical diagnosis because the accumulation of such reactive oxygen species could cause the risk of cardiovascular disease. Herein, we reported an electrochemical sensor to determine H2O2 and glucose. The pyrroloquinoline [...] Read more.
H2O2-related metabolites are essential indicators in clinical diagnosis because the accumulation of such reactive oxygen species could cause the risk of cardiovascular disease. Herein, we reported an electrochemical sensor to determine H2O2 and glucose. The pyrroloquinoline skeleton containing molecules (PQT) were used as the electrocatalyst and the gold cavity array (GCA) electrodes as the supporting electrode. The GCA electrode was fabricated by electrodeposition using high-ordered two-dimensional polystyrene spheres as the template. The strong absorbability of iodide ions (I) displaced adventitious materials from the metal surface and the I monolayer was subsequently removed by electrochemical oxidation to get a clean electrode surface. PQT molecules were firmly immobilized on the GCA electrode and performed an excellent electrocatalytic effect on H2O2/glucose detection, manifested by a small overpotential and a significantly increased reduction current. A good linear correlation was observed over a wide range of 0.2 μmol/L–1.0 mmol/L with the limit of detection of 0.05 μmol/L. Moreover, the sensor can realize sensitive, accurate, and the highly selective detection of actual samples, proving its application prospect in clinical diagnosis. Full article
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Article
Integrated Multifunctional Graphene Discs 2D Plasmonic Optical Tweezers for Manipulating Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1769; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101769 - 23 May 2022
Viewed by 600
Abstract
Optical tweezers are key tools to trap and manipulate nanoparticles in a non-invasive way, and have been widely used in the biological and medical fields. We present an integrated multifunctional 2D plasmonic optical tweezer consisting of an array of graphene discs and the [...] Read more.
Optical tweezers are key tools to trap and manipulate nanoparticles in a non-invasive way, and have been widely used in the biological and medical fields. We present an integrated multifunctional 2D plasmonic optical tweezer consisting of an array of graphene discs and the substrate circuit. The substrate circuit allows us to apply a bias voltage to configure the Fermi energy of graphene discs independently. Our work is based on numerical simulation of the finite element method. Numerical results show that the optical force is generated due to the localized surface plasmonic resonance (LSPR) mode of the graphene discs with Fermi Energy Ef = 0.6 eV under incident intensity I = 1 mW/μm2, which has a very low incident intensity compared to other plasmonic tweezers systems. The optical forces on the nanoparticles can be controlled by modulating the position of LSPR excitation. Controlling the position of LSPR excitation by bias voltage gates to configure the Fermi energy of graphene disks, the nanoparticles can be dynamically transported to arbitrary positions in the 2D plane. Our work is integrated and has multiple functions, which can be applied to trap, transport, sort, and fuse nanoparticles independently. It has potential applications in many fields, such as lab-on-a-chip, nano assembly, enhanced Raman sensing, etc. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advanced Nanomaterials for Sensing Applications)
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Article
Ag-Modified Porous Perovskite-Type LaFeO3 for Efficient Ethanol Detection
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1768; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101768 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 481
Abstract
Perovskite (ABO3) nanosheets with a high carrier mobility have been regarded as the best candidates for gas-sensitive materials arising from their exceptional crystal structure and physical–chemical properties that often exhibit good gas reactivity and stability. Herein, Ag in situ modified porous [...] Read more.
Perovskite (ABO3) nanosheets with a high carrier mobility have been regarded as the best candidates for gas-sensitive materials arising from their exceptional crystal structure and physical–chemical properties that often exhibit good gas reactivity and stability. Herein, Ag in situ modified porous LaFeO3 nanosheets were synthesized by the simple and efficient graphene oxide (GO)-assisted co-precipitation method which was used for sensitive and selective ethanol detection. The Ag modification ratio was studied, and the best performance was obtained with 5% Ag modification. The Ag/LaFeO3 nanomaterials with high surface areas achieved a sensing response value (Rg/Ra) of 20.9 to 20 ppm ethanol at 180 °C with relatively fast response/recovery times (26/27 s). In addition, they showed significantly high selectivity for ethanol but only a slight response to other interfering gases. The enhanced gas-sensing performance was attributed to the combination of well-designed porous nanomaterials with noble metal sensitization. The new approach is provided for this strategy for the potential application of more P-type ABO3 perovskite-based gas-sensitive devices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials and Nanodevices for VOCs Gas Sensor)
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Article
Performance Analysis and Optimization of a PBDB-T:ITIC Based Organic Solar Cell Using Graphene Oxide as the Hole Transport Layer
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1767; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101767 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 689
Abstract
The hole transport layer (HTL) in organic solar cells (OSCs) plays an imperative role in boosting the cell’s performance. PEDOT:PSS is a conventional HTL used in OSCs owing to its high design cost and instability issues. It can be replaced with graphene oxide [...] Read more.
The hole transport layer (HTL) in organic solar cells (OSCs) plays an imperative role in boosting the cell’s performance. PEDOT:PSS is a conventional HTL used in OSCs owing to its high design cost and instability issues. It can be replaced with graphene oxide to increase the cell performance by overcoming instability issues. Graphene oxide (GO) has gained popularity in recent years for its practical use in solar energy due to its remarkable mechanical, electrical, thermal, and optical properties. This work uses SCAPS-1D to examine the results of graphene oxide (GO)-based organic solar cells by giving a comparison between the performance of absorber layers and a GO-based HTL to see which absorber material interacts more strongly with GO. The absorber layer PBDB-T:ITIC paired with GO as HTL outperforms the other absorber layers due to its better optical and electrical characteristics. Numerical simulations are performed within the SCAPS software at various absorber layer thicknesses, defect densities, and doping values to assess the influence on device performance and efficiency. After cell optimization, the best efficiency of an improved OSC is found to be 17.36%, and the outcomes of the simulated OSC are referenced to the results of the experimentally implemented OSC. These results provide a possible future direction for developing GO-based OSCs with higher efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advances and Applications of 2D Materials)
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Article
Silica Aerogel Hybridized with Melamine-Terephthalaldehyde Polymer for In-Tube Solid-Phase Microextraction of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons from Environment Water
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1766; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101766 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 356
Abstract
To improve the extraction performance of the silica aerogel, a melamine-terephthalaldehyde polymer was used to hybridize silica aerogel, and the hybridized aerogel was coated on the surface of stainless steel wire to prepare a fiber-filled extraction tube through placing four wires into a [...] Read more.
To improve the extraction performance of the silica aerogel, a melamine-terephthalaldehyde polymer was used to hybridize silica aerogel, and the hybridized aerogel was coated on the surface of stainless steel wire to prepare a fiber-filled extraction tube through placing four wires into a polyetheretherketone tube. The tube was combined with high-performance liquid chromatography, then the online extraction and detection were established. Several polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were selected as the target analytes. Under the optimum extraction and desorption conditions, the limit of detection was as low as 3.0 ng L−1, and the linear range was 0.01–20.0 μg L−1. The enrichment factors of PAHs were in the range of 1724–2393. Three environmental water samples of mineral water, tap water and river water were analyzed by this method, and the recoveries that spiked at 1.0–10.0 μg L−1 were between 80.5–126%. It showed many advantages compared with other methods, such as better sensitivity, faster detection and online analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials-Based Sample Pretreatment)
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Article
Machine Learning Approach for Application-Tailored Nanolubricants’ Design
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1765; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101765 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 471
Abstract
The fascinating tribological phenomenon of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) observed at the nanoscale was confirmed in our numerous macroscale experiments. We designed and employed CNT-containing nanolubricants strictly for polymer lubrication. In this paper, we present the experiment characterising how the CNT structure determines its [...] Read more.
The fascinating tribological phenomenon of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) observed at the nanoscale was confirmed in our numerous macroscale experiments. We designed and employed CNT-containing nanolubricants strictly for polymer lubrication. In this paper, we present the experiment characterising how the CNT structure determines its lubricity on various types of polymers. There is a complex correlation between the microscopic and spectral properties of CNTs and the tribological parameters of the resulting lubricants. This confirms indirectly that the nature of the tribological mechanisms driven by the variety of CNT–polymer interactions might be far more complex than ever described before. We propose plasmonic interactions as an extension for existing models describing the tribological roles of nanomaterials. In the absence of quantitative microscopic calculations of tribological parameters, phenomenological strategies must be employed. One of the most powerful emerging numerical methods is machine learning (ML). Here, we propose to use this technique, in combination with molecular and supramolecular recognition, to understand the morphology and macro-assembly processing strategies for the targeted design of superlubricants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Carbon-Based Nanocomposite and Applications)
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Article
Synthesis and Characterization of Ag/ZnO Nanoparticles for Bacteria Disinfection in Water
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1764; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101764 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 475
Abstract
In this study, two green synthesis routes were used for the synthesis of Ag/ZnO nanoparticles, using cassava starch as a simple and low-cost effective fuel and Aloe vera as a reducing and stabilizing agent. The Ag/ZnO nanoparticles were characterized and used for bacterial [...] Read more.
In this study, two green synthesis routes were used for the synthesis of Ag/ZnO nanoparticles, using cassava starch as a simple and low-cost effective fuel and Aloe vera as a reducing and stabilizing agent. The Ag/ZnO nanoparticles were characterized and used for bacterial disinfection of lake water contaminated with Escherichia coli (E. coli). Characterization indicated the formation of a face-centered cubic structure of metallic silver nanoparticles with no insertion of Ag into the ZnO hexagonal wurtzite structure. Physicochemical and bacteriological analyses described in “Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater” were used to evaluate the efficiency of the treatment. In comparison to pure ZnO, the synthesized Ag/ZnO nanoparticles showed high efficiencies against Escherichia coli (E. coli) and general coliforms present in the lake water. These pathogens were absent after treatment using Ag/ZnO nanoparticles. The results indicate that Ag/ZnO nanoparticles synthesized via green chemistry are a promising candidate for the treatment of wastewaters contaminated by bacteria, due to their facile preparation, low-cost synthesis, and disinfection efficiency. Full article
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Article
Modeling of Advanced Silicon Nanomaterial Synthesis Approach: From Reactive Thermal Plasma Jet to Nanosized Particles
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1763; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101763 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 450
Abstract
A three-dimensional numerical modelling of a time-dependent, turbulent thermal plasma jet was developed to synthetize silicon nanopowder. Computational fluid dynamics and particle models were employed via COMSOL Multiphysics®v. 5.4 (COMSOL AB, Stockholm, Sweden) to simulate fluid and particle motion in the [...] Read more.
A three-dimensional numerical modelling of a time-dependent, turbulent thermal plasma jet was developed to synthetize silicon nanopowder. Computational fluid dynamics and particle models were employed via COMSOL Multiphysics®v. 5.4 (COMSOL AB, Stockholm, Sweden) to simulate fluid and particle motion in the plasma jet, as well as the heat dependency. Plasma flow and particle interactions were exemplified in terms of momentum, energy, and turbulence flow. The transport of nanoparticles through convection, diffusion, and thermophoresis were also considered. The trajectories and heat transfer of both plasma jet fields, and particles are represented. The swirling flow controls the plasma jet and highly affects the dispersion of the nanoparticles. We demonstrate a decrease in both particles’ velocity and temperature distribution at a higher carrier gas injection velocity. The increase in the particle size and number affects the momentum transfer, turbulence modulation, and energy of particles, and also reduces plasma jet parameters. On the other hand, the upstream flame significantly impacts the particle’s behavior under velocity and heat transfer variation. Our findings open the door for examining thermal plasma impact in nanoparticle synthesis, where it plays a major role in optimizing the growth parameters, ensuring high quality with a low-cost technique. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plasma-Assisted Nanofabrication)
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Article
A Multi-Omics Approach to Evaluate the Toxicity Mechanisms Associated with Silver Nanoparticles Exposure
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1762; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101762 - 22 May 2022
Viewed by 450
Abstract
Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are currently used in many different industrial, commercial and health fields, mainly due to their antibacterial properties. Due to this widespread use, humans and the environment are increasingly exposed to these types of nanoparticles, which is the reason why the [...] Read more.
Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are currently used in many different industrial, commercial and health fields, mainly due to their antibacterial properties. Due to this widespread use, humans and the environment are increasingly exposed to these types of nanoparticles, which is the reason why the evaluation of the potential toxicity associated with AgNPs is of great importance. Although some of the toxic effects induced by AgNPs have already been shown, the elucidation of more complete mechanisms is yet to be achieved. In this sense, and since the integration of metabolomics and transcriptomics approaches constitutes a very useful strategy, in the present study targeted and untargeted metabolomics and DNA microarrays assays have been combined to evaluate the molecular mechanisms involved in the toxicity induced by 10 nm AgNPs. The results have shown that AgNPs induce the synthesis of glutathione as a cellular defense mechanism to face the oxidative environment, while inducing the depletion of relevant molecules implicated in the synthesis of important antioxidants. In addition, it has been observed that AgNPs completely impair the intracellular energetic metabolism, especially affecting the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and disrupting the tricarboxylic acids cycle. It has been demonstrated that AgNPs exposure also affects the glycolysis pathway. The effect on such pathway differs depending on the step of the cycle, which a significant increase in the levels of glucose as way to counterbalance the depleted levels of ATP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanotoxicity Analysis)
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Article
Plasma-Wind-Assisted In2S3 Preparation with an Amorphous Surface Structure for Enhanced Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1761; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101761 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 528
Abstract
Photocatalytic production from water is considered an effective solution to fossil fuel-related environmental concerns, and photocatalyst surface science holds a significant interest in balancing photocatalysts’ stability and activity. We propose a plasma-wind method to tune the surface properties of a photocatalyst with an [...] Read more.
Photocatalytic production from water is considered an effective solution to fossil fuel-related environmental concerns, and photocatalyst surface science holds a significant interest in balancing photocatalysts’ stability and activity. We propose a plasma-wind method to tune the surface properties of a photocatalyst with an amorphous structure. Theoretical calculation shows that the amorphous surface structure can cause an unsaturated coordination environment to adjust the electron distribution, forming more adsorption sites. Thus, the photocatalyst with a crystal–amorphous (C–A) interface can strengthen light absorption, harvest photo-induced electrons, and enrich the active sites, which help improve hydrogen yield. As a proof of concept, with indium sulfide (In2S3) nanosheets used as the catalyst, an impressive hydrogen production rate up to 457.35 μmol cm−2 h−1 has been achieved. Moreover, after plasma-assisted treatment, In2S3 with a C–A interface can produce hydrogen from water under natural outdoor conditions. Following a six-hour test, the rate of photocatalytic hydrogen evolution is found to be 400.50 μmol cm−2 g−1, which demonstrates that a catalyst prepared through plasma treatment is both effective and highly practical. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Catalysis for Sustainable Chemistry and Energy)
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Article
Mechanisms of Scaling Effect for Emerging Nanoscale Interconnect Materials
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1760; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101760 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 411
Abstract
The resistivity of Cu interconnects increases rapidly with continuously scaling down due to scatterings, causing a major challenge for future nodes in M0 and M1 layers. Here, A Boltzmann-transport-equation-based Monte Carlo simulator, including all the major scattering mechanisms of interconnects, is developed for [...] Read more.
The resistivity of Cu interconnects increases rapidly with continuously scaling down due to scatterings, causing a major challenge for future nodes in M0 and M1 layers. Here, A Boltzmann-transport-equation-based Monte Carlo simulator, including all the major scattering mechanisms of interconnects, is developed for the evaluation of electron transport behaviors. Good agreements between our simulation and the experimental results are achieved for Cu, Ru, Co, and W, from bulk down to 10 nm interconnects. The line resistance values of the four materials with the inclusion of liner and barrier thicknesses are calculated in the same footprint for a fair comparison. The impact of high aspect ratio on resistivity is analyzed for promising buried power rail materials, such as Ru and W. Our results show that grain boundary scattering plays the most important role in nano-scale interconnects, followed by surface roughness and plasma excimer scattering. Surface roughness scattering is the origin of the resistivity decrease for high-aspect-ratio conductive rails. In addition, the grain sizes for the technical nodes of different materials are extracted and the impact of grain size on resistivity is analyzed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrical, Optical, and Transport Properties of Semiconductors)
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Article
One-Dimensional P-Doped Graphitic Carbon Nitride Tube: Facile Synthesis, Effect of Doping Concentration, and Enhanced Mechanism for Photocatalytic Hydrogen Evolution
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1759; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101759 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 397
Abstract
P-doped graphitic carbon nitride tubes (P-CNTS) with different P concentrations were successfully fabricated via a pre-hydrothermal in combination with a calcination process under a nitrogen atmosphere. The as-prepared samples exhibited excellent photocatalytic performance with a hydrogen production rate (HPR) of 2749.3 μmol g [...] Read more.
P-doped graphitic carbon nitride tubes (P-CNTS) with different P concentrations were successfully fabricated via a pre-hydrothermal in combination with a calcination process under a nitrogen atmosphere. The as-prepared samples exhibited excellent photocatalytic performance with a hydrogen production rate (HPR) of 2749.3 μmol g−1 h−1, which was 17.5 and 6.6 times higher than that of the bulk graphitic carbon nitride (CNB) and graphitic carbon nitride tube (CNT). The structural and textural properties of the P-CNT samples were well-investigated via a series of characterization methods. Compared with the bulk g-C3N4, the tubular structure of the doped samples was provided with a larger specific surface area (SSA) and a relatively rough interior. Besides the above, surface defects were formed due to the doping, which could act as more active sites for the hydrogen production reaction. In addition, the introduction of the P element could effectively adjust the band-gap, strengthen the harvest of visible-light, and boost the effective separation of photogenerated charges. More interestingly, these findings can open up a novel prospect for the enhancement of the photocatalytic performance of the modified g-C3N4. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocatalyst for Water Splitting)
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Article
Bimodal Interventional Instrument Markers for Magnetic Particle Imaging and Magnetic Resonance Imaging—A Proof-of-Concept Study
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1758; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101758 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 555
Abstract
The purpose of this work was to develop instrument markers that are visible in both magnetic particle imaging (MPI) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The instrument markers were based on two different magnetic nanoparticle types (synthesized in-house KLB and commercial Bayoxide E8706). Coatings [...] Read more.
The purpose of this work was to develop instrument markers that are visible in both magnetic particle imaging (MPI) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The instrument markers were based on two different magnetic nanoparticle types (synthesized in-house KLB and commercial Bayoxide E8706). Coatings containing one of both particle types were fabricated and measured with a magnetic particle spectrometer (MPS) to estimate their MPI performance. Coatings based on both particle types were then applied on a segment of a nonmetallic guidewire. Imaging experiments were conducted using a commercial, preclinical MPI scanner and a preclinical 1 tesla MRI system. MPI image reconstruction was performed based on system matrices measured with dried KLB and Bayoxide E8706 coatings. The bimodal markers were clearly visible in both methods. They caused circular signal voids in MRI and areas of high signal intensity in MPI. Both the signal voids as well as the areas of high signal intensity were larger than the real marker size. Images that were reconstructed with a Bayoxide E8706 system matrix did not show sufficient MPI signal. Instrument markers with bimodal visibility are essential for the perspective of monitoring cardiovascular interventions with MPI/MRI hybrid systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials for Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
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Article
Mg12O12 and Be12O12 Nanocages as Sorbents and Sensors for H2S and SO2 Gases: A Theoretical Approach
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1757; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101757 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 364
Abstract
Theoretical calculations based on the Density Functional Theory (DFT) have been performed to investigate the interaction of H2S as well SO2 gaseous molecules at the surfaces of Be12O12 and Mg12O12 nano-cages. The results show [...] Read more.
Theoretical calculations based on the Density Functional Theory (DFT) have been performed to investigate the interaction of H2S as well SO2 gaseous molecules at the surfaces of Be12O12 and Mg12O12 nano-cages. The results show that a Mg12O12 nano-cage is a better sorbent than a Be12O12 nano-cage for the considered gases. Moreover, the ability of SO2 gas to be adsorbed is higher than that of H2S gas. The HOMO–LUMO gap (Eg) of Be12O12 nano-cage is more sensitive to SO2 than H2S adsorption, while the Eg value of Mg12O12 nano-cage reveals higher sensitivity to H2S than SO2 adsorption. The molecular dynamic calculations show that the H2S molecule cannot be retained at the surface of a Be12O12 nano-cage within 300–700 K and cannot be retained on a Mg12O12 nano-cage at 700 K, while the SO2 molecule can be retained at the surfaces of Be12O12 and Mg12O12 nano-cages up to 700 K. Moreover, the thermodynamic calculations indicate that the reactions between H2S as well SO2 with Be12O12 and Mg12O12 nano-cages are exothermic. Our results suggest that we can use Be12O12 and Mg12O12 nano-cages as sorbents as well as sensors for H2S and SO2 gases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Review Papers in Theory and Simulation of Nanostructures)
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Article
Femtosecond Laser-Assisted Formation of Hybrid Nanoparticles from Bi-Layer Gold–Silicon Films for Microscale White-Light Source
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1756; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101756 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 389
Abstract
It is very natural to use silicon as a primary material for microelectronics. However, silicon application in nanophotonics is limited due to the indirect gap of its energy band structure. To improve the silicon emission properties, it can be combined with a plasmonic [...] Read more.
It is very natural to use silicon as a primary material for microelectronics. However, silicon application in nanophotonics is limited due to the indirect gap of its energy band structure. To improve the silicon emission properties, it can be combined with a plasmonic part. The resulting metal–dielectric (hybrid) nanostructures have shown their excellence compared to simple metallic dielectric nanostructures. Still, in many cases, the fabrication of such structures is time consuming and quite difficult. Here, for the first time, we demonstrate a single-step and lithography-free laser-induced dewetting of bi-layer nanoscale-thickness gold–silicon films supported by a glass substrate to produce hybrid nanoparticles. For obtaining hybrid nanoparticles, we study nonlinear photoluminescence by mapping their optical response and morphology by scanning electron microscopy. This method can be used for the fabrication of arrays of hybrid nanoparticles providing white-light photoluminescence with a good control of their microscopic sizes and position. The developed approach can be useful for a wide range of photonic applications including the all-optical data processing and storage where miniaturization down to micro- and nanoscale together with an efficiency increase is of high demand. Full article
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Article
Gold Ion Beam Milled Gold Zero-Mode Waveguides
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1755; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101755 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 365
Abstract
Zero-mode waveguides (ZMWs) are widely used in single molecule fluorescence microscopy for their enhancement of emitted light and the ability to study samples at physiological concentrations. ZMWs are typically produced using photo or electron beam lithography. We report a new method of ZMW [...] Read more.
Zero-mode waveguides (ZMWs) are widely used in single molecule fluorescence microscopy for their enhancement of emitted light and the ability to study samples at physiological concentrations. ZMWs are typically produced using photo or electron beam lithography. We report a new method of ZMW production using focused ion beam (FIB) milling with gold ions. We demonstrate that ion-milled gold ZMWs with 200 nm apertures exhibit similar plasmon-enhanced fluorescence seen with ZMWs fabricated with traditional techniques such as electron beam lithography. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advanced Nanomaterials for Sensing Applications)
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Review
Metal-Doped Graphitic Carbon Nitride Nanomaterials for Photocatalytic Environmental Applications—A Review
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1754; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101754 - 21 May 2022
Viewed by 649
Abstract
In the current world situation, population and industrial growth have become major problems for energy and environmental concerns. Extremely noxious pollutants such as heavy metal ions, dyes, antibiotics, phenols, and pesticides in water are the main causes behind deprived water quality leading to [...] Read more.
In the current world situation, population and industrial growth have become major problems for energy and environmental concerns. Extremely noxious pollutants such as heavy metal ions, dyes, antibiotics, phenols, and pesticides in water are the main causes behind deprived water quality leading to inadequate access to clean water. In this connection, graphite carbon nitride (GCN or g-C3N4) a nonmetallic polymeric material has been utilized extensively as a visible-light-responsive photocatalyst for a variety of environmental applications. This review focuses on recent developments in the design and photocatalytic applications of metal-doped GCN-based nanomaterials in CO2 photoreduction, water splitting toward hydrogen production, bacterial disinfection, and organic pollutant degradation. Additionally, this review discusses various methods of using GCN-based materials to optimize dye sensitization, metal deposition, ion doping, and their environmental applications. Full article
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Article
Biologically Relevant Micellar Nanocarrier Systems for Drug Encapsulation and Functionalization of Metallic Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(10), 1753; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nano12101753 - 20 May 2022
Viewed by 391
Abstract
The preparation of new and functional nanostructures has received more attention in the scientific community in the past decade due to their wide application versatility. Among these nanostructures, micelles appear to be one of the most interesting supramolecular organizations for biomedical applications because [...] Read more.
The preparation of new and functional nanostructures has received more attention in the scientific community in the past decade due to their wide application versatility. Among these nanostructures, micelles appear to be one of the most interesting supramolecular organizations for biomedical applications because of their ease of synthesis and reproducibility and their biocompatibility since they present an organization similar to the cell membrane. In this work, we developed micellar nanocarrier systems from surfactant molecules derived from oleic acid and tetraethylene glycol that were able to encapsulate and in vitro release the drug dexamethasone. In addition, the designed micelle precursors were able to functionalize metallic NPs, such as gold NPs and iron oxide NPs, resulting in monodispersed hybrid nanomaterials with high stability in aqueous media. Therefore, a new triazole-derived micelle precursor was developed as a versatile encapsulation system, opening the way for the preparation of new micellar nanocarrier platforms for drug delivery, magnetic resonance imaging, or computed tomography contrast agents for therapeutic and diagnostic applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Magnetic Nanostructures: Synthesis, Properties and Applications)
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