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Title: Soft Landing of Bare Nanoparticles with Controlled Size, Composition, and Morphology

A kinetically-limited physical synthesis method based on magnetron sputtering and gas aggregation has been coupled with size-selection and ion soft landing to prepare bare metal nanoparticles on surfaces with controlled coverage, size, composition, and morphology. Employing atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), it is demonstrated that the size and coverage of bare nanoparticles soft landed onto flat glassy carbon and silicon as well as stepped graphite surfaces may be controlled through size-selection with a quadrupole mass filter and the length of deposition, respectively. The bare nanoparticles are observed with AFM to bind randomly to the flat glassy carbon surface when soft landed at relatively low coverage (1012 ions). In contrast, on stepped graphite surfaces at intermediate coverage (1013 ions) the soft landed nanoparticles are shown to bind preferentially along step edges forming extended linear chains of particles. At the highest coverage (5 x 1013 ions) examined in this study the nanoparticles are demonstrated with both AFM and SEM to form a continuous film on flat glassy carbon and silicon surfaces. On a graphite surface with defects, however, it is shown with SEM that the presence of localized surface imperfections results in agglomeration of nanoparticles onto these featuresmore » and the formation of neighboring depletion zones that are devoid of particles. Employing high resolution scanning transmission electron microscopy in the high angular annular dark field imaging mode (STEM-HAADF) and electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) it is demonstrated that the magnetron sputtering/gas aggregation synthesis technique produces single metal particles with controlled morphology as well as bimetallic alloy nanoparticles with clearly defined core-shell structure. Therefore, this kinetically-limited physical synthesis technique, when combined with ion soft landing, is a versatile complementary method for preparing a wide range of bare supported nanoparticles with selected properties that are free of the solvent, organic capping agents, and residual reactants present with nanoparticles synthesized in solution.« less
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
48305; KC0302020
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Nanoscale, (8):3491-3503
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
soft landing; magnetron sputtering; gas aggregation; nanoparticle; cluster; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory