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Atomic Diffusion within Individual Gold Nanocrystal

DOI: 10.1038/srep06765 DOI Help
PMID: 25341377 PMID Help

Authors: Gang Xiong (London Centre for Nanotechnology) , Jesse Clark (University College London) , Chris Nicklin (Diamond Light Source) , Jonathan Rawle (Diamond Light Source) , Ian Robinson (Research Complex at Harwell)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Scientific Reports , VOL 4

State: Published (Approved)
Published: October 2014

Open Access Open Access

Abstract: Due to their excess surface free energy and structural instabilities, nanoparticles exhibit interesting physical and chemical properties. There has been an ever-growing interest in investigating these properties, driven by the desire to further miniaturize electronic devices, develop new functional materials and catalysts. Here, the intriguing question of how diffusion evolves in a single nanoparticle is investigated by measuring the spatial and temporal variations of the diffracted coherent X-ray intensity during copper diffusion into a gold nanocrystal. Dislocation loops formed from the insertion of single layer of extra atoms between neighbouring gold host lattice planes are detected. Au-Cu alloy channels are found to penetrate the nanocrystal due to the differential diffusion rate along different directions. With the advent of higher brilliance sources and free-electron-lasers, Bragg Coherent X-ray Diffraction Imaging can play an important role in unveiling atomic behaviours in three dimensions for nanomaterials during various fundamental processes.

Journal Keywords: Coherent X-Ray Diffraction; Nanoparticle; Alloying

Subject Areas: Physics, Materials, Technique Development


Instruments: I07-Surface & interface diffraction

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