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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 23, 2024
  2. Dendritic growth of lithium (Li) is hindering potential applications of Li-metal batteries, and new approaches are needed to address this challenge. The confinement effect of two-dimensional materials triggered by strong molecular interactions between parallelly-aligned graphene oxide (GO) at Li metal interface is proposed here as a new strategy to suppress the dendritic growth of Li. The effectiveness of aligned GO for Li-metal cells is shown for two different polymer separator cells:liquid electrolytes with porous propylene (PP) separators and solid polyethylene oxide (PEO) electrolytes. For the case of liquid electrolytes, PP separators were modified with plasma treatment to induce the alignment of GO layers. The Li‖Li cells with aligned GO illustrate a stable Li platting/stripping (up to 1000 cycles). The Li‖lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery cells with aligned GO could cycle at 5C for 1000 cycles (∼90% capacity retention). For solid polymer electrolyte (SPE) cells, GO–Li confinement effect is also effective in Li dendrites suppression enhancing the stability and lifespan of Li-metal batteries. The Li‖LFP cell with the GO-modified SPE showed ∼85% capacity retention after 200 cycles at 1C. Such combined high rate capability and number of cycles exceeds the previously reported performances for both liquid and SPE-based Li‖LFP cells. This points to a new opportunity for utilizing the confinement effect of two-dimensional materials for the development of next generation, fast rate rechargeable Li batteries. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 18, 2024
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  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 25, 2024
  5. Study of nucleation and growth dynamic events of cubic-phase ice crystals at TiO2–water nanointerface.

     
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  6. Real-time TEM images of evolution of the liposomes formed via self-assembly of phosphatidylcholine lipids in liquid pockets of GLC shows three stages of fast initial growth, slow growth and stabilization, and formation of stable liposomes.

     
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  7. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  8. Abstract

    The nucleation and growth of nanoparticles are critical processes determining the size, shape, and properties of resulting nanoparticles. However, understanding the complex mechanisms guiding the formation and growth of colloidal multielement alloy nanoparticles remains incomplete due to the involvement of multiple elements with different properties. This study investigates in situ colloidal synthesis of multielement alloys using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) in a liquid cell. Two different pathways for nanoparticle formation in a solution containing Au, Pt, Ir, Cu, and Ni elements, resulting in two distinct sets of particles are observed. One set exhibits high Au and Cu content, ranging from 10 to 30 nm, while the other set is multi‐elemental, with Pt, Cu, Ir, and Ni, all less than 4 nm. The findings suggest that, besides element miscibility, metal ion characteristics, particularly reduction rates, and valence numbers, significantly impact particle composition during early formation stages. Density functional theory (DFT) simulations confirm differences in nanoparticle composition and surface properties collectively influence the unique growth behaviors in each nanoparticle set. This study illuminates mechanisms underlying the formation and growth of multielement nanoparticles by emphasizing factors responsible for chemical separation and effects of interplay between composition, surface energies, and element miscibility on final nanoparticles size and structure.

     
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