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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Degree Discipline: Physics
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Analysis of Biological Materials Using a Nuclear Microprobe
The use of nuclear microprobe techniques including: Particle induced x-ray emission (PIXE) and Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS) for elemental analysis and quantitative elemental imaging of biological samples is especially useful in biological and biomedical research because of its high sensitivity for physiologically important trace elements or toxic heavy metals. The nuclear microprobe of the Ion Beam Modification and Analysis Laboratory (IBMAL) has been used to study the enhancement in metal uptake of two different plants. The roots of corn (Zea mays) have been analyzed to study the enhancement of iron uptake by adding Fe (II) or Fe (III) of different concentrations to the germinating medium of the seeds. The Fe uptake enhancement effect produced by lacing the germinating medium with carbon nanotubes has also been investigated. The aim of this investigation is to ensure not only high crop yield but also Fe-rich food products especially from calcareous soil which covers 30% of world’s agricultural land. The result will help reduce iron deficiency anemia, which has been identified as the leading nutritional disorder especially in developing countries by the World Health Organization. For the second plant, Mexican marigold (Tagetes erecta), the effect of an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (Glomus intraradices) for the improvement of lead-phytoremediation of lead contaminated soil has been investigated. Phytoremediation provides an environmentally safe technique of removing toxic heavy metals (like lead), which can find their way into human food, from lands contaminated by human activities like mining or by natural disasters like earthquakes. The roots of Mexican marigold have been analyzed to study the role of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in enhancement of lead uptake from the contaminated rhizosphere. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700099/
Electrical Conduction Mechanisms in the Disordered Material System P-type Hydrogenated Amorphous Silicon
The electrical and optical properties of boron doped hydrogenated amorphous silicon thin films (a-Si) were investigated to determine the effect of boron and hydrogen incorporation on carrier transport. The a-Si thin films were grown by plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) at various boron concentrations, hydrogen dilutions, and at differing growth temperatures. The temperature dependent conductivity generally follows the hopping conduction model. Above a critical temperature, the dominant conduction mechanism is Mott variable range hopping conductivity (M-VRH), where p = ¼, and the carrier hopping depends on energy. However, at lower temperatures, the coulomb interaction between charge carriers becomes important and Efros-Shklosvkii variable hopping (ES-VRH) conduction, where p=1/2, must be included to describe the total conductivity. To correlate changes in electrical conductivity to changes in the local crystalline order, the transverse optical (TO) and transverse acoustic (TA) modes of the Raman spectra were studied to relate changes in short- and mid-range order to the effects of growth temperature, boron, and hydrogen incorporation. With an increase of hydrogen and/or growth temperature, both short and mid-range order improve, whereas the addition of boron results in the degradation of short range order. It is seen that there is a direct correlation between the electrical conductivity and changes in the short and mid-range order resulting from the passivation of defects by hydrogen and the creation of trap states by boron. This work was done under the ARO grant W911NF-10-1-0410, William W. Clark Program Manager. The samples were provided by L-3 Communications. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700106/
Sputtering of Bi and Preferential Sputtering of an Inhomogeneous Alloy
Angular distributions and total yields of atoms sputtered from bismuth targets by normally incident 10 keV -50 keV Ne+ and Ar+ ions have been measured both experimentally and by computer simulation. Polycrystalline Bi targets were used for experimental measurements. The sputtered atoms were collected on high purity aluminum foils under ultra-high vacuum conditions, and were subsequently analyzed using Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy. The Monte-Carlo based SRIM code was employed to simulate angular distributions of sputtered Bi atoms and total sputtering yields of Bi to compare with experiment. The measured sputtering yields were found to increase with increasing projectile energy for normally incident 10 keV - 50 keV Ne+ and Ar+ ions. The shapes of the angular distributions of sputtered Bi atoms demonstrated good agreement between experiment and simulation in the present study. The measured and simulated angular distributions of sputtered Bi exhibited an over-cosine tendency. The measured value of the degree of this over-cosine nature was observed to increase with increasing incident Ne+ ion energy, but was not strongly dependent on incident Ar+ ion energy. The differential angular sputtering yield and partial sputtering yields due to Ar ion bombardment of an inhomogeneous liquid Bi:Ga alloy have been investigated, both experimentally and by computer simulation. Normally incident 25 keV and 50 keV beams of Ar+ were used to sputter a target of 99.8 at% Ga and 0.2 at% Bi held at 40° C in ultra-high vacuum (UHV), under which conditions the alloy is known to exhibit extreme Gibbsian surface segregation that produces essentially a monolayer of Bi atop the bulk liquid. Angular distributions of sputtered neutrals and partial sputtering yields obtained from the conversion of areal densities of Bi and Ga atoms on collector foils were determined. The Monte-Carlo based SRIM code was employed to simulate the experiment and obtain the angular distribution of sputtered components. The angular distribution of sputtered Ga atoms, originating from underneath the surface monolayer, was measured to be sharply peaked in angle about the surface normal direction compared to the Bi atoms originating from surface monolayer. The simulation study produced contradicting results, where the species originating from surface monolayer was strongly peaked around the surface normal compared to the species originating from beneath the surface monolayer. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700021/
Studies of Charged Particle Dynamics for Antihydrogen Synthesis
Synthesis and capture of antihydrogen in controlled laboratory conditions will enable precise studies of neutral antimatter. The work presented deals with some of the physics pertinent to manipulating charged antiparticles in order to create neutral antimatter, and may be applicable to other scenarios of plasma confinement and charged particle interaction. The topics covered include the electrostatic confinement of a reflecting ion beam and the transverse confinement of an ion beam in a purely electrostatic configuration; the charge sign effect on the Coulomb logarithm for a two component (e.g., antihydrogen) plasma in a Penning trap as well as the collisional scattering for binary Coulomb interactions that are cut off at a distance different than the Debye length; and the formation of magnetobound positronium and protonium. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699934/
Enhancement of Mechanical, Thermal Stability, and Tribological Properties by Addition of Functionalized Reduced Graphene Oxide in Epoxy
The effects of octadecylamine-functionalized reduced graphene oxide (FRGO) on the frictional and wear properties of diglycidylether of bisphenol-A (DGEBA) epoxy are studied using a pin-on-disk tribometer. It was observed that the addition of FRGO significantly improves the tribological, mechanical, and thermal properties of epoxy matrix. Graphene oxide (GO) was functionalized with octadecylamine (ODA), and then reduction of oxygen-containing functional groups was carried out using hydrazine monohydrate. The Raman and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy studies confirm significant reduction in oxygen-containing functional groups and formation of ODA functionalized reduced GO. The nanocomposites are prepared by adding 0.1, 0.2, 0.5 and 1.0 wt % of FRGO to the epoxy. The addition of FRGO increases by more than an order of magnitude the sliding distance during which the dynamic friction is ≤ 0.1. After this distance, the friction sharply increases to the range of 0.4 - 0.5. We explain the increase in sliding distance during which the friction is low by formation of a transfer film from the nanocomposite to the counterface. The wear rates in the low and high friction regimes are approximately 1.5 x 10-4 mm3/N·m and 5.5 x 10-4 mm3/N·m, respectively. The nanocomposites exhibit a 74 % increase in Young’s modulus with 0.5 wt. % of FRGO, and an increase in glass transition and thermal degradation temperatures. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699889/
Temporal Complexity and Stochastic Central Limit Theorem
Complex processes whose evolution in time rests on the occurrence of a large and random number of intermittent events are the systems under study. The mean time distance between two consecutive events is infinite, thereby violating the ergodic condition and activating at the same time a stochastic central limit theorem that explains why the Mittag-Leffler function is a universal property of nature. The time evolution of these complex systems is properly generated by means of fractional differential equations, thus leading to the interpretation of fractional trajectories as the average over many random trajectories, each of which fits the stochastic central limit theorem and the condition for the Mittag-Leffler universality. Additionally, the effect of noise on the generation of the Mittag-Leffler function is discussed. Fluctuations of relatively weak intensity can conceal the asymptotic inverse power law behavior of the Mittag-Leffler function, providing a reason why stretched exponentials are frequently found in nature. These results afford a more unified picture of complexity resting on the Mittag-Leffler function and encompassing the standard inverse power law definition. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700093/
The Effects of Residual Gases on the Field Emission Properties of Zno, Gan, Zns Nanostructures, and the Effects of Light on the Resistivity of Graphene
In this dissertation, I present that at a vacuum of 3×10-7 Torr, residual O2, CO2, H2 and Ar exposure do not significantly degrade the field emission (FE) properties of ZnO nanorods, but N2 exposure significantly does. I propose that this could be due to the dissociation of N2 into atomic nitrogen species and the reaction of such species with ZnO. I also present the effects of O2, CO2, H2O, N2, H2, and Ar residual gas exposure on the FE properties of GaN and ZnS nanostructure. A brief review of growth of ZnO, GaN and ZnS is provided. In addition, Cs deposition on GaN nanostructures at ultra-high vacuum results in 30% decrease in turn-on voltage and 60% in work function. The improvement in FE properties could be due to a Cs-induced space-charge layer at the surface that reduces the barrier for FE and lowers the work function. I describe a new phenomenon, in which the resistivity of CVD-grown graphene increases to a higher saturated value under light exposure, and depends on the wavelength of the light—the shorter the wavelength, the higher the resistivity. First-principle calculations and theoretical analysis based on density functional theory show that (1) a water molecule close to a graphene defect is easier to be split than that of the case of no defect existing and (2) there are a series of meta-stable partially disassociated states for an interfacial water molecule. Calculated disassociation energies are from 2.5 eV to 4.6 eV, that match the experimental observation range of light wavelength from visible to 254 nm UV light under which the resistivity of CVD-grown graphene is increased. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500202/
An Electro- Magneto-static Field for Confinement of Charged Particle Beams and Plasmas
A system is presented that is capable of confining an ion beam or plasma within a region that is essentially free of applied fields. An Artificially Structured Boundary (ASB) produces a spatially periodic set of magnetic field cusps that provides charged particle confinement. Electrostatic plugging of the magnetic field cusps enhances confinement. An ASB that has a small spatial period, compared to the dimensions of a confined plasma, generates electro- magneto-static fields with a short range. An ASB-lined volume thus constructed creates an effectively field free region near its center. It is assumed that a non-neutral plasma confined within such a volume relaxes to a Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution. Space charge based confinement of a second species of charged particles is envisioned, where the second species is confined by the space charge of the first non-neutral plasma species. An electron plasma confined within an ASB-lined volume can potentially provide confinement of a positive ion beam or positive ion plasma. Experimental as well as computational results are presented in which a plasma or charged particle beam interact with the electro- magneto-static fields generated by an ASB. A theoretical model is analyzed and solved via self-consistent computational methods to determine the behavior and equilibrium conditions of a relaxed plasma. The equilibrium conditions of a relaxed two species plasma are also computed. In such a scenario, space charge based electrostatic confinement is predicted to occur where a second plasma species is confined by the space charge of the first plasma species. An experimental apparatus with cylindrical symmetry that has its interior surface lined with an ASB is presented. This system was developed by using a simulation of the electro- magneto-static fields present within the trap to guide mechanical design. The construction of the full experimental apparatus is discussed. Experimental results that show the characteristics of electron beam transmission through the experimental apparatus are presented. A description of the experimental hardware and software used for trapping a charged particle beam or plasma is also presented. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500001/
How Cooperative Systems Respond to External Forces
Cooperative interactions permeate through nature, bringing about emergent behavior and complexity. Using a simple cooperative model, I illustrate the mean field dynamics that occur at the critical point of a second order phase transition in the framework of Langevin equations. Through this formalism I discuss the response, both linear and nonlinear, to external forces. Emphasis is placed on how information is transferred from one individual to another in order to facilitate the collective response of the cooperative network to a localized perturbation. The results are relevant to a wide variety of systems, ranging from nematic liquid crystals, to flocks and swarms, social groups, and neural networks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500014/
Synthesis, Characterization, Structural, and Optical Properties of Zinc Oxide Nanostructures Embedded in Silicon Based Substrates
Structural and optical properties of ZnO nanostructures synthesized by low energy ion implantation technique were examined. ZnO molecular ions were implanted into Si/SiO2 substrates at room temperature and then furnace annealed under different temperatures and environments. In all as-implanted samples only Zn nanostructures with varying diameters distributed into the Si/SiO2 matrices were observed. No trace of ZnO was found. The distributions of Zn nanostructures in Si/SiO2 closely matched results from Stopping and Range of Ions in Matter (SRIM) simulations. During annealing at 750 oC, Zn diffused both toward and away from the surface of the substrate and combine with oxygen to form ZnO nanostructures. At higher annealing temperatures ZnO bonding started to break down and transfer to zinc silicate (Zn2SiO4), and at 900 oC the ZnO was completely converted into Zn2SiO4. The average sizes of Zn/ZnO nanostructures depended on the ion fluence. If the fluence increased the average sizes of nanostructures also increased and vice versa. For room temperature photoluminescence (RT-PL), band-edge emission in the ultraviolet (UV) region was observed from all samples annealed at 700 oC/750 oC and were slightly blue shifted as compare to bulk ZnO. Donor-bound exciton (D,X) and acceptor-bound exciton (A,X) transitions were observed in low temperature photoluminescence (PL). The lifetime of both donor-bound excitonic emission (D, X) and acceptor-bound excitonic emission (A, X) were found to be in the picosecond (ps) range. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500222/
Synthesis Strategies and a Study of Properties of Narrow and Wide Band Gap Nanowires
Various techniques to synthesize nanowires and nanotubes as a function of growth temperature and time were investigated. These include growth of nanowires by a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) system using vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) growth mechanism and electro-chemical synthesis of nanowires and nanotubes. Narrow band gap InSb Eg = 0.17 eV at room temp) nanowires were successively synthesized. Using a phase diagram, the transition of the nanowire from metallic- semiconducting- semi-metallic phase was investigated. A thermodynamic model is developed to show that the occurrence of native defects in InSb nanowires influenced by the nanowire growth kinetics and thermodynamics of defect formation. Wide band gap ZnO (Eg = 3.34 eV) and In2O3 (3.7 eV) were also synthesized. ZnO nanowires and nanotubes were successfully doped with a transition metal Fe, making it a Dilute Magnetic Semiconductor of great technological relevance. Structural and electronic characterizations of nanowires were studied for different semiconducting, metallic and semi-metallic nanowires. Electron transport measurements were used to estimate intrinsic material parameters like carrier concentration and mobility. An efficient gas sensing device using a single In2O3 nanowire was studied and which showed sensitivity to reducing gas like NH3 and oxidizing gas like O2 gas at room temperature. The efficiency of the gas sensing device was found to be sensitive to the nature of contacts as well as the presence of surface states on the nanowire. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc499984/
Novel Semi-Conductor Material Systems: Molecular Beam Epitaxial Growth and Characterization
Semi-conductor industry relies heavily on silicon (Si). However, Si is not a direct-band gap semi-conductor. Consequently, Si does not possess great versatility for multi-functional applications in comparison with the direct band-gap III-V semi-conductors such as GaAs. To bridge this gap, what is ideally required is a semi-conductor material system that is based on silicon, but has significantly greater versatility. While sparsely studied, the semi-conducting silicides material systems offer great potential. Thus, I focused on the growth and structural characterization of ruthenium silicide and osmium silicide material systems. I also characterized iron silicon germanide films using extended x-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) to reveal phase, semi-conducting behavior, and to calculate nearest neighbor distances. The choice of these silicides material systems was due to their theoretically predicted and/or experimentally reported direct band gaps. However, the challenge was the existence of more than one stable phase/stoichiometric ratio of these materials. In order to possess the greatest control over the growth process, molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) has been employed. Structural and film quality comparisons of as-grown versus annealed films of ruthenium silicide are presented. Structural characterization and film quality of MBE grown ruthenium silicide and osmium silicide films via in situ and ex situ techniques have been done using reflection high energy electron diffraction, scanning tunneling microscopy, atomic force microscopy, cross-sectional scanning electron microscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and micro Raman spectroscopy. This is the first attempt, to the best of our knowledge, to grow osmium silicide thin films on Si(100) via the template method and compare it with the regular MBE growth method. The pros and cons of using the MBE template method for osmium silicide growth are discussed, as well as the structural differences of the as-grown versus annealed films. Future perspectives include further studies on other semi-conducting silicides material systems in terms of growth optimization and characterization. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490047/
Cooperation-induced Criticality in Neural Networks
The human brain is considered to be the most complex and powerful information-processing device in the known universe. The fundamental concepts behind the physics of complex systems motivate scientists to investigate the human brain as a collective property emerging from the interaction of thousand agents. In this dissertation, I investigate the emergence of cooperation-induced properties in a system of interacting units. I demonstrate that the neural network of my research generates a series of properties such as avalanche distribution in size and duration coinciding with the experimental results on neural networks both in vivo and in vitro. Focusing attention on temporal complexity and fractal index of the system, I discuss how to define an order parameter and phase transition. Criticality is assumed to correspond to the emergence of temporal complexity, interpreted as a manifestation of non-Poisson renewal dynamics. In addition, I study the transmission of information between two networks to confirm the criticality and discuss how the network topology changes over time in the light of Hebbian learning. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283813/
Effects of Quantum Coherence and Interference
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Quantum coherence and interference (QCI) is a phenomenon that takes place in all multi-level atomic systems interacting with multiple lasers. In this work QCI is used to create several interesting effects like lasing without inversion (LWI), controlling group velocity of light to extreme values, controlling the direction of propagation through non-linear phase matching condition and for controlling the correlations in field fluctuations. Controlling group velocity of light is very interesting because of many novel applications it can offer. One of the unsolved problems in this area is to achieve a slow and fast light which can be tuned continuously as a function of frequency. We describe a method for creation of tunable slow and fast light by controlling intensity of incident laser fields using QCI effects. Lasers are not new to the modern world but an extreme ultra-violet laser or a x-ray laser is definitely one of the most desirable technologies today. Using QCI, we describe a method to realize lasing at high frequencies by creating lasing without inversion. Role of QCI in creating correlations and anti-correlations, which are generated by vacuum fluctuations, in a three level lambda system coupled to two strong fields is discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500094/
A New Approach for Transition Metal Free Magnetic Sic: Defect Induced Magnetism After Self-ion Implantation
SiC has become an attractive wide bandgap semiconductor due to its unique physical and electronic properties and is widely used in high temperature, high frequency, high power and radiation resistant applications. SiC has been used as an alternative to Si in harsh environments such as in the oil industry, nuclear power systems, aeronautical, and space applications. SiC is also known for its polytypism and among them 3C-SiC, 4H-SiC and 6H-SiC are the most common polytypes used for research purposes. Among these polytypes 4H-SiC is gaining importance due to its easy commercial availability with a large bandgap of 3.26 eV at room temperature. Controlled creation of defects in materials is an approach to modify the electronic properties in a way that new functionality may result. SiC is a promising candidate for defect-induced magnetism on which spintronic devices could be developed. The defects considered are of room temperature stable vacancy types, eliminating the need for magnetic impurities, which easily diffuse at room temperature. Impurity free vacancy type defects can be created by implanting the host atoms of silicon or carbon. The implantation fluence determines the defect density, which is a critical parameter for defect induced magnetism. Therefore, we have studied the influence of low fluence low energy silicon and carbon implantation on the creation of defects in n-type 4H-SiC. The characterization of the defects in these implanted samples was performed using the techniques, RBS-channeling and Raman spectroscopy. We have also utilized these characterization techniques to analyze defects created in much deeper layers of the SiC due to implantation of high energy nitrogen ions. The experimentally determined depths of the Si damage peaks due to low energy (60 keV) Si and C ions with low fluences (< 1015 cm-2) are consistent with the SRIM-2011 simulations. From RBS-C Si sub-lattice measurements for different fluences (1.1×1014 cm-2 to 3.2×1014 cm-2) of Si implantation in 4H-SiC, the Si vacancy density is estimated to range from 1.29×1022 cm-3 to 4.57×1022 cm-2, corresponding to average vacancy distances of 4.26 Å to 2.79 Å at the damage peak (50±5 nm). Similarly, for C implanted fluences (1.85×1014 cm-2 to 1×1015 cm-2), the Si vacancy density varies from 1.37×1022 cm-3 to 4.22×1022 cm-3 with the average vacancy distances from 4.17 Å to 2.87 Å at the damage peak (110±10 nm). From the Raman spectroscopy, the implantation-induced lattice disorders calculated along the c-axis (LO mode) and perpendicular to c-axis (TO mode) in 4H-SiC are found to be similar. Furthermore, the results obtained from SQUID measurements in C implanted n-type 4H-SiC sample with fluences ranging from 1×1012 to 1.7×1016 ions/cm2 have been discussed. The implanted samples showed diamagnetism similar to the unimplanted sample. To date, to our best of knowledge, no experimental work has been reported on investigating defect induced magnetism for self-ion implantation in n-type 4H-SiC. These first reports of experimental results can provide useful information in future studies for a better understanding of self-ion implantation in SiC-based DMS. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271849/
Zinc Oxide Nanoparticles for Nonlinear Bioimaging, Cell Detection and Selective Cell Destruction
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Light matter interactions have led to a great part of our current understanding of the universe. When light interacts with matter it affects the properties of both the light and the matter. Visible light, being in the region that the human eye can "see," was one of the first natural phenomenon we used to learn about our universe. The application of fundamental physics research has spilled over into other fields that were traditionally separated from physics, being considered two different sciences. Current physics research has applications in all scientific fields. By taking a more physical approach to problems in fields such as chemistry and biology, we have furthered our knowledge of both. Nanocrystals have many interesting optical properties. Furthermore, the size and properties of nanocrystals has given them applications in materials ranging from solar cells to sunscreens. By understanding and controlling their interactions with systems we can utilize them to increase our knowledge in other fields of science, such as biology. Nanocrystals exhibit optical properties superior to currently used fluorescent dyes. By replacing molecular dyes with nanoparticles we can reduce toxicity, increase resolution and have better cellular targeting abilities. They have also shown to have toxicity to cancer and antibacterial properties. With the understanding of how to target specific cells in vitro as well as in vivo, nanoparticles have the potential to be used as highly cell specific nanodrugs that can aid in the fight against cancer and the more recent fight against antibiotic resistant bacteria. This dissertation includes our work on bioimaging as well as our novel drug delivery system. An explanation of toxicity associated with ZnO nanoparticles and how we can use it and the nonlinear optical properties of ZnO for nanodrugs and nanoprobes is presented. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271908/
Broad-band Light Emission From Ion Implanted Silicon Nanocrystals Via Plasmonic and Non-plasmonic Effects for Optoelectronics
Broad band light emission ranging from the ultraviolet (UV) to the near infrared (NIR) has been observed from silicon nanoparticles fabricated using low energy (30-45 keV) metal and non-metal ion implantation with a fluence of 5*1015 ions/cm2 in crystalline Si(100). It is found from a systematic study of the annealing carried out at certain temperatures that the spectral characteristics remains unchanged except for the enhancement of light emission intensity due to annealing. The annealing results in nucleation of metal nanoclusters in the vicinity of Si nanoparticles which enhances the emission intensity. Structural and optical characterization demonstrate that the emission originates from both highly localized defect bound excitons at the Si/Sio2 interface, as well as surface and interface traps associated with the increased surface area of the Si nanocrystals. The emission in the UV is due to interband transitions from localized excitonic states at the interface of Si/SiO2 or from the surface of Si nanocrystals. The radiative efficiency of the UV emission from the Si nanoparticles can be modified by the localized surface plasmon (LSP) interaction induced by the nucleation of silver nanoparticles with controlled annealing of the samples. The UV emission from Si nanoclusters are coupled resonantly to the LSP modes. The non-resonant emission can be enhanced by electrostatic-image charge effects. The emission in the UV (~3.3 eV) region can also be significantly enhanced by electrostatic image charge effects induced by Au nanoparticles. The UV emission from Si nanoclusters, in this case, can be coupled without LSP resonance. The recombination of carriers in Si bound excitons is mediated by transverse optical phonons due to the polarization of the surface bound exciton complex. The low energy side of emission spectrum at low temperature is dominated by 1st and 2nd order phonon replicas. Broad band emission ranging from the UV to the NIR wavelength range can be obtained from Ag implanted onto a single silicon substrate. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177255/
Theoretical and Experimental Investigations of Peg Based Thermo Sensitive Hydro Microgel
Poly ethylene glycol (PEG) based microgels were synthesized and investigated. The PEG microgel has the same phase transition as the traditional poly N-isopropylacrylamide (PNIPAM). As a good substitute of PNIPAM, PEG microgel exhibits many advantages: it is easier to control the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of the microgel by changing the component of copolymers; it has a more solid spherical core-shell structure to have a double thermo sensitivity; it is straightforward to add other sensitivities such as pH, magnetic field or organic functional groups; it readily forms a photonic crystal structure exhibiting Bragg diffraction; and, most importantly, the PEG microgel is biocompatible with human body and has been approved by FDA while PNIPAM has not. PEG microgels with core-shell structure are synthesized with a two-step free radical polymerization and characterized with DLS, SLS and UV–Vis. The dynamic mechanics of melting and recrystallizing of the PEG core-shell microgel are presented and discussed. Photonic crystals of PEG microgels were synthesized and characterized. The crystal can be isolated in a thin film or a bulk column. The phase transition of PEG microgel was simulated with the mean field theory. The enthalpy and entropy of phase transition can be estimated from the best fit to theoretical calculation with experimental data. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177187/
A Non-equilibrium Approach to Scale Free Networks
Many processes and systems in nature and society can be characterized as large numbers of discrete elements that are (usually non-uniformly) interrelated. These networks were long thought to be random, but in the late 1990s, Barabási and Albert found that an underlying structure did in fact exist in many natural and technological networks that are now referred to as scale free. Since then, researchers have gained a much deeper understanding of this particular form of complexity, largely by combining graph theory, statistical physics, and advances in computing technology. This dissertation focuses on out-of-equilibrium dynamic processes as they unfold on these complex networks. Diffusion in networks of non-interacting nodes is shown to be temporally complex, while equilibrium is represented by a stable state with Poissonian fluctuations. Scale free networks achieve equilibrium very quickly compared to regular networks, and the most efficient are those with the lowest inverse power law exponent. Temporally complex diffusion also occurs in networks with interacting nodes under a cooperative decision-making model. At a critical value of the cooperation parameter, the most efficient scale free network achieves consensus almost as quickly as the equivalent all-to-all network. This finding suggests that the ubiquity of scale free networks in nature is due to Zipf's principle of least effort. It also suggests that an efficient scale free network structure may be optimal for real networks that require high connectivity but are hampered by high link costs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149609/
Theoretical and Experimental Investigations Concerning Microgels of Varied Spherical Geometries
Polymer gels have been studied extensively due to their ability to simulate biological tissues and to swell or collapse reversibly in response to external stimuli. This work presents a variety of studies using poly-N-isopropylacrylamide (PNIPA) hydrogels. The projects have been carried out both in the lab of Dr. Zhibing Hu and in collaboration with others outside of UNT: (1) an analysis of the swelling kinetics of microgel spherical shells prepared using a novel design of microfluidic devices; (2) a comparison of the drug-release rates between nanoparticle structures having either core or core-with-shell (core-shell) designs; (3) an investigation into the thermodynamics of swelling for microgels of exceedingly small size. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149680/
Ultrafast Spectroscopy of Hybrid Ingan/gan Quantum Wells
Group III nitrides are efficient light emitters. The modification of internal optoelectronic properties of these materials due to strain, external or internal electric field are an area of interest. Insertion of metal nanoparticles (MNPs) (Ag, Au etc) inside the V-shaped inverted hexagonal pits (IHP) of InGaN/GaN quantum wells (QWs) offers the potential of improving the light emission efficiencies. We have observed redshift and blueshift due to the Au MNPs and Ag MNPs respectively. This shift could be due to the electric field created by the MNPs through electrostatic image charge. We have studied the ultrafast carrier dynamics of carriers in hybrid InGaN/GaN QWs. The change in quantum confinement stark effect due to MNPs plays an important role for slow and fast carrier dynamics. We have also observed the image charge effect on the ultrafast differential transmission measurement due to the MNPs. We have studied the non-linear absorption spectroscopy of these materials. The QWs behave as a discharging of a nanocapacitor for the screening of the piezoelectric field due to the photo-excited carriers. We have separated out screening and excitonic bleaching components from the main differential absorption spectra of InGaN/GaN QWs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149635/
Criticality in Cooperative Systems
Cooperative behavior arises from the interactions of single units that globally produce a complex dynamics in which the system acts as a whole. As an archetype I refer to a flock of birds. As a result of cooperation the whole flock gets special abilities that the single individuals would not have if they were alone. This research work led to the discovery that the function of a flock, and more in general, that of cooperative systems, surprisingly rests on the occurrence of organizational collapses. In this study, I used cooperative systems based on self-propelled particle models (the flock models) which have been proved to be virtually equivalent to sociological network models mimicking the decision making processes (the decision making model). The critical region is an intermediate condition between a highly disordered state and a strong ordered one. At criticality the waiting times distribution density between two consecutive collapses shows an inverse power law form with an anomalous statistical behavior. The scientific evidences are based on measures of information theory, correlation in time and space, and fluctuation statistical analysis. In order to prove the benefit for a system to live at criticality, I made a flock system interact with another similar system, and then observe the information transmission for different disturbance values. I proved that at criticality the transfer of information gets the maximal efficiency. As last step, the flock model has been shown that, despite its simplicity, is sufficiently a realistic model as proved via the use of 3D simulations and computer animations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271910/
Effects of Dissipation on Propagation of Surface Electromagnetic and Acoustic Waves
With the recent emergence of the field of metamaterials, the study of subwavelength propagation of plane waves and the dissipation of their energy either in the form of Joule losses in the case of electomagnetic waves or in the form of viscous dissipation in the case of acoustic waves in different interfaced media assumes great importance. with this motivation, I have worked on problems in two different areas, viz., plasmonics and surface acoustics. the first part (chapters 2 & 3) of the dissertation deals with the emerging field of plasmonics. Researchers have come up with various designs in an efort to fabricate efficient plasmonic waveguides capable of guiding plasmonic signals. However, the inherent dissipation in the form of Joule losses limits efficient usage of surface plasmon signal. a dielectric-metal-¬dielectric planar structure is one of the most practical plasmonic structures that can serve as an efficient waveguide to guide electromagnetic waves along the metal-dielectric boundary. I present here a theoretical study of propagation of surface plasmons along a symmetric dielectric-metal-dielectric structure and show how proper orientation of the optical axis of the anisotropic substrate enhances the propagation length. an equation for propagation length is derived in a wide range of frequencies. I also show how the frequency of coupled surface plasmons can be modulated by changing the thickness of the metal film. I propose a Kronig-Penny model for the plasmonic crystal, which in the long wavelength limit, may serve as a homogeneous dielectric substrate with high anisotropy which do not exist for natural optical crystals. in the second part (chapters 4 & 5) of the dissertation, I discuss an interesting effect of extraordinary absorption of acoustic energy due to resonant excitation of Rayleigh waves in a narrow water channel clad between two metal plates. Starting from the elastic properties of the metal plates, I derive a dispersion equation that gives resonant frequencies, which coincide with those observed in the experiment that was performed by Wave Phenomena Group at Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain. Two eigenmodes with different polarizations and phase velocities are obtained from the dispersion equation. at certain critical aperture of the channel, an interesting cutoff effect, which is unusual for an acoustic wave, is observed for one of the eigenmodes with symmetric distribution of the pressure field. the theoretical prediction of the coupling and synchronization of Rayleigh waves strongly supports the experimentally measured shift of the resonant frequencies in the transmission spectra with channel aperture. the observed high level of absorption may find applications in designing metamaterial acoustic absorbers. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115126/
Electrostatic Effects in III-V Semiconductor Based Metal-optical Nanostructures
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The modification of the band edge or emission energy of semiconductor quantum well light emitters due to image charge induced phenomenon is an emerging field of study. This effect observed in quantum well light emitters is critical for all metal-optics based light emitters including plasmonics, or nanometallic electrode based light emitters. This dissertation presents, for the first time, a systematic study of the image charge effect on semiconductor–metal systems. the necessity of introducing the image charge interactions is demonstrated by experiments and mathematical methods for semiconductor-metal image charge interactions are introduced and developed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115090/
Electrostatic Mechanism of Emission Enhancement in Hybrid Metal-semiconductor Light-emitting Heterostructures
III-V nitrides have been put to use in a variety of applications including laser diodes for modern DVD devices and for solid-state white lighting. Plasmonics has come to the foreground over the past decade as a means for increasing the internal quantum efficiency (IQE) of devices through resonant interaction with surface plasmons which exist at metal/dielectric interfaces. Increases in emission intensity of an order of magnitude have been previously reported using silver thin-films on InGaN/GaN MQWs. the dependence on resonant interaction between the plasmons and the light emitter limits the applications of plasmonics for light emission. This dissertation presents a new non-resonant mechanism based on electrostatic interaction of carriers with induced image charges in a nearby metallic nanoparticle. Enhancement similar in strength to that of plasmonics is observed, without the restrictions imposed upon resonant interactions. in this work we demonstrate several key features of this new interaction, including intensity-dependent saturation, increase in the radiative recombination lifetime, and strongly inhomogeneous light emission. We also present a model for the interaction based on the aforementioned image charge interactions. Also discussed are results of work done in the course of this research resulting in the development of a novel technique for strain measurement in light-emitting structures. This technique makes use of a spectral fitting model to extract information about electron-phonon interactions in the sample which can then be related to strain using theoretical modeling. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115113/
Modification of Graphene Properties: Electron Induced Reversible Hydrogenation, Oxidative Etching and Layer-by-layer Thinning
In this dissertation, I present the mechanism of graphene hydrogenation via three different electron sources: scanning electron microscopy, e-beam irradiation and H2 and He plasma irradiation. in each case, hydrogenation occurs due to electron impact fragmentation of adsorbed water vapor from the sample preparation process. in the proposed model, secondary and backscattered electrons generated from incident electron interactions with the underlying silicon substrate are responsible for the dissociation of water vapor. Chemisorbed H species from the dissociation are responsible for converting graphene into hydrogenated graphene, graphane. These results may lead to higher quality graphane films having a larger band gap than currently reported. in addition, the dissertation presents a novel and scalable method of controllably removing single atomic planes from multi-layer graphene using electron irradiation from an intense He plasma under a positive sample bias. As the electronic properties or multi-layer graphene are highly dependent on the number of layers, n, reducing n in certain regions has many benefits. for example, a mask in conjunction with this thinning method could be used for device applications. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115101/
Temporal Properties Of Dynamic Processes On Complex Networks
Many social, biological and technological systems can be viewed as complex networks with a large number of interacting components. However despite recent advancements in network theory, a satisfactory description of dynamic processes arising in such cooperative systems is a subject of ongoing research. In this dissertation the emergence of dynamical complexity in networks of interacting stochastic oscillators is investigated. In particular I demonstrate that networks of two and three state stochastic oscillators present a second-order phase transition with respect to the strength of coupling between individual units. I show that at the critical point fluctuations of the global order parameter are characterized by an inverse-power law distribution and I assess their renewal properties. Additionally, I study the effect that different types of perturbation have on dynamical properties of the model. I discuss the relevance of those observations for the transmission of information between complex systems. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103403/
High Efficiency High Power Blue Laser by Resonant Doubling in PPKTP
I developed a high power blue laser for use in scientific and technical applications (eg. precision spectroscopy, semiconductor inspection, flow cytometry, etc). It is linearly polarized, single longitudinal and single transverse mode, and a convenient fiber coupled continuous wave (cw) laser source. My technique employs external cavity frequency doubling and provides better power and beam quality than commercially available blue diode lasers. I use a fiber Bragg grating (FBG) stabilized infrared (IR) semiconductor laser source with a polarization maintaining (PM) fiber coupled output. Using a custom made optical and mechanical design this output is coupled with a mode matching efficiency of 96% into the doubling cavity. With this carefully designed and optimized cavity, measurements were carried out at various fundamental input powers. A net efficie ncy of 81 % with an output power of 680 mW at 486 nm was obtained using 840 mW of IR input. Also I report an 87.5 % net efficiency in coupling of blue light from servo locked cavity into a single mode PM fiber. Thus I have demonstrated a total fiber to fiber efficiency of 71% can be achieved in our approach using periodically poled potassium titanyl phosphate (PPKTP). To obtain these results, all losses in the system were carefully studied and minimized. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103306/
The Interactions of Plasma with Low-k Dielectrics: Fundamental Damage and Protection Mechanisms
Nanoporous low-k dielectrics are used for integrated circuit interconnects to reduce the propagation delays, and cross talk noise between metal wires as an alternative material for SiO2. These materials, typically organosilicate glass (OSG) films, are exposed to oxygen plasmas during photoresist stripping and related processes which substantially damage the film by abstracting carbon, incorporating O and OH, eventually leading to significantly increased k values. Systematic studies have been performed to understand the oxygen plasma-induced damage mechanisms on different low-k OSG films of various porosity and pore interconnectedness. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy are used to understand the damage kinetics of O radicals, ultraviolet photons and charged species, and possible ways to control the carbon loss from the film. FTIR results demonstrate that O radical present in the plasma is primarily responsible for carbon abstraction and this is governed by diffusion mechanism involving interconnected film nanopores. The loss of carbon from the film can be controlled by closing the pore interconnections, He plasma pretreatment is an effective way to control the damage at longer exposure by closing the connections between the pores. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84175/
Nanoscale Materials Applications: Thermoelectrical, Biological, and Optical Applications with Nanomanipulation Technology
In a sub-wavelength scale, even approaching to the atomic scale, nanoscale physics shows various novel phenomena. Since it has been named, nanoscience and nanotechnology has been employed to explore and exploit this small scale world. For example, with various functionalized features, nanowire (NW) has been making its leading position in the researches of physics, chemistry, biology, and engineering as a miniaturized building block. Its individual characteristic shows superior and unique features compared with its bulk counterpart. As one part of these research efforts and progresses, and with a part of the fulfillment of degree study, novel methodologies and device structures in nanoscale were devised and developed to show the abilities of high performing thermoelectrical, biological, and optical applications. A single β-SiC NW was characterized for its thermoelectric properties (thermal conductivity, Seebeck coefficient, and figure of merit) to compare with its bulk counterpart. The combined structure of Ag NW and ND was made to exhibit its ability of clear imaging of a fluorescent cell. And a plasmonic nanosture of silver (Ag) nanodot array and a β-SiC NW was fabricated to show a high efficient light harvesting device that allows us to make a better efficient solar cell. Novel nanomanipulation techniques were developed and employed in order to fabricate all of these measurement platforms. Additionally, one of these methodological approaches was used to successfully isolate a few layer graphene. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84238/
Ion Beam Synthesis of Carbon Assisted Nanosystems in Silicon Based Substrates
The systematic study of the formation of &#946;-SiC formed by low energy carbon ion (C-)implantation into Si followed by high temperature annealing is presented. The research is performed to explore the optimal annealing conditions. The formation of crystalline &#946;-SiC is clearly observed in the sample annealed at 1100 °C for a period of 1 hr. Quantitative analysis is performed in the formation of &#946;-SiC by the process of implantation of different carbon ion fluences of 1×1017, 2×1017, 5×1017, and 8×1017 atoms /cm2 at an ion energy of 65 keV into Si. It is observed that the average size of &#946;-SiC crystals decreased and the amount of &#946;-SiC crystals increased with the increase in the implanted fluences when the samples were annealed at 1100°C for 1 hr. However, it is observed that the amount of &#946;-SiC linearly increased with the implanted fluences up to 5×1017 atoms /cm2. Above this fluence the amount of &#946;-SiC appears to saturate. The stability of graphitic C-C bonds at 1100°C limits the growth of SiC precipitates in the sample implanted at a fluence of 8×1017 atoms /cm2 which results in the saturation behavior of SiC formation in the present study. Secondly, the carbon cluster formation process in silica and the characterization of formed clusters is presented. Silicon dioxide layers ~500 nm thick are thermally grown on a Si (100) wafer. The SiO2 layers are then implanted with 70 keV carbon ions at a fluence of 5×1017 atoms/cm2. The implanted samples are annealed 1100 °C for different time periods of 10 min., 30 min., 60 min., 90 min., and 120 min., in the mixture of argon and hydrogen gas (96 % Ar + 4% hydrogen). Photoluminescence spectroscopy reveals UV to visible emission from the samples. A detail mechanism of the photoluminescence and its possible origin is discussed by correlating the structural and optical properties of the samples. Raman spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, spectroscopy, photoluminescence spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy are used to characterize the samples. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68033/
Thorium and Uranium M-shell X-ray Production Cross Sections for 0.4 – 4.0 MeV Protons, 0.4 - 6.0 MeV Helium Ions, 4.5 – 11.3 MeV Carbon Ions, and 4.5 – 13.5 MeV Oxygen Ions.
The M-shell x-ray production cross section for thorium and uranium have been determined for protons of energy 0.4 - 4.0 MeV, helium ions of energy 0.4 - 6.0 MeV, carbon ions of energy 4.5 - 11.3 MeV and oxygen ions of energy 4.5 - 13.5 MeV. The total cross sections and the cross sections for individual x-ray peaks in the spectrum, consisting of the following transitions Mz (M4-N2, M5-N3, M4-N3), Ma (M5-N6,7), Mb (M4-N6, M5-O3, M4- O2), and Mg (M4-O3, M5-P3, M3-N4, M3-N5), were compared to the theoretical values determined from the PWBA + OBKN and ECUSAR. The theoretical values for the carbon and oxygen ions were also modified to take into account the effects of multiple ionizations of the target atom by the heavier ions. It is shown that the results of the ECUSAR theory tend to provide better agreement with the experimental data. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68032/
A Determination of the Fine Structure Constant Using Precision Measurements of Helium Fine Structure
Spectroscopic measurements of the helium atom are performed to high precision using an atomic beam apparatus and electro-optic laser techniques. These measurements, in addition to serving as a test of helium theory, also provide a new determination of the fine structure constant &#945;. An apparatus was designed and built to overcome limitations encountered in a previous experiment. Not only did this allow an improved level of precision but also enabled new consistency checks, including an extremely useful measurement in 3He. I discuss the details of the experimental setup along with the major changes and improvements. A new value for the J = 0 to 2 fine structure interval in the 23P state of 4He is measured to be 31 908 131.25(30) kHz. The 300 Hz precision of this result represents an improvement over previous results by more than a factor of three. Combined with the latest theoretical calculations, this yields a new determination of &#945; with better than 5 ppb uncertainty, &#945;-1 = 137.035 999 55(64). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31547/
EEG, Alpha Waves and Coherence
This thesis addresses some theoretical issues generated by the results of recent analysis of EEG time series proving the brain dynamics are driven by abrupt changes making them depart from the ordinary Poisson condition. These changes are renewal, unpredictable and non-ergodic. We refer to them as crucial events. How is it possible that this form of randomness be compatible with the generation of waves, for instance alpha waves, whose observation seems to suggest the opposite view the brain is characterized by surprisingly extended coherence? To shed light into this apparently irretrievable contradiction we propose a model based on a generalized form of Langevin equation under the influence of a periodic stimulus. We assume that there exist two different forms of time, a subjective form compatible with Poisson statistical physical and an objective form that is accessible to experimental observation. The transition from the former to the latter form is determined by the brain dynamics interpreted as emerging from the cooperative interaction among many units that, in the absence of cooperation would generate Poisson fluctuations. We call natural time the brain internal time and we make the assumption that in the natural time representation the time evolution of the EEG variable y(t) is determined by a Langevin equation perturbed by a periodic process that in this time representation is hardly distinguishable from an erratic process. We show that the representation of this random process in the experimental time scale is characterized by a surprisingly extended coherence. We show that this model generates a sequence of damped oscillations with a time behavior that is remarkably similar to that derived from the analysis of real EEG's. The main result of this research work is that the existence of crucial events is not incompatible with the alpha wave coherence. In addition to this important result, we find another result that may help our group, or any other research group working on the analysis of brain's dynamics, to prove or to disprove the existence of crucial events. We study the diffusion process generated by fluctuations emerging from the same model after filtering out the alpha coherence, and we study the recursion to the origin. We study the survival probability of this process, namely the probability that up to a given time no re-crossing of the origin occurs. We find that this is an inverse power law with a power that depends on whether or not crucial events exist. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28389/
Growth and Characterization of β-Iron Disilicide, β-Iron Silicon Germanide, and Osmium Silicides
The semiconducting silicides offer significant potential for use in optoelectronic devices. Full implementation of the materials, however, requires the ability to tailor the energy gap and band structure to permit the synthesis of heterojunctions. One promising approach is to alloy the silicides with Ge. As part of an investigation into the synthesis of semiconducting silicide heterostructures, a series of β-Fe(Si1−xGex)2 epilayer samples, with nominal alloy content in the range 0 < x < 0.15, have been prepared by molecular beam epitaxy on Si(100). I present results of the epitaxial and crystalline quality of the films, as determined by reflection high-energy electron diffraction, Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy, and double crystal x-ray diffraction, and of the band gap dependence on the alloy composition, as determined by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. A reduction in band gap was observed with increasing Ge content, in agreement with previous theoretical predictions. However Ge segregation was also observed in β-Fe(Si1−xGex)2 epilayers when x > 0.04. Osmium silicide films have been grown by molecular beam epitaxy on Si(100). The silicides have been grown using e-beam evaporation sources for both Os and Si onto Si(100) substrates at varying growth rates and temperatures ranging from 600-700ºC. The resulting films have been analyzed using reflection high-energy electron diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, reflectivity measurements, in-plane and out of plane X-ray diffraction and temperature dependent magnetotransport. A change in crystalline quality is observed with an increase in Si overpressure. For a lower silicon to osmium flux ration (JSi/JOs=1.5) both OsSi2 and Os2Si3 occur, whereas with a much larger Si overpressure (JSi/JOs>4), crystalline quality is greatly increased and only a single phase, Os2Si3, is present. The out-of-plane X-ray diffraction data show that the film grows along its [4 0 2] direction, with a good crystal quality as evidenced by the small FWHM in the rocking curve. The in-plane X-ray diffraction data show growth twins with perpendicular orientation to each other. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12107/
Nonlinear UV Laser Build-up Cavity: An Efficient Design
Using the concept of the build-up cavity for second harmonic generation to produce 243nm laser light, an innovative cavity is theoretically explored using a 15mm length CLBO crystal. In order to limit the losses of the cavity, the number of effective optical surfaces is kept to only four and the use of a MgF2 crystal is adopted to separate the harmonic and fundamental laser beam from each other. The cavity is shown to have an expected round trip loss of five tenths of a percent or better, resulting in a conversion efficiency greater than 65%. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9833/
Exploration of hierarchical leadership and connectivity in neural networks in vitro.
Living neural networks are capable of processing information much faster than a modern computer, despite running at significantly lower clock speeds. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms neural networks utilize is an issue of substantial importance. Neuronal interaction dynamics were studied using histiotypic networks growing on microelectrode arrays in vitro. Hierarchical relationships were explored using bursting (when many neurons fire in a short time frame) dynamics, pairwise neuronal activation, and information theoretic measures. Together, these methods reveal that global network activity results from ignition by a small group of burst leader neurons, which form a primary circuit that is responsible for initiating most network-wide burst events. Phase delays between leaders and followers reveal information about the nature of the connection between the two. Physical distance from a burst leader appears to be an important factor in follower response dynamics. Information theory reveals that mutual information between neuronal pairs is also a function of physical distance. Activation relationships in developing networks were studied and plating density was found to play an important role in network connectivity development. These measures provide unique views of network connectivity and hierarchical relationship in vitro which should be included in biologically meaningful models of neural networks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9775/
The Nonadditive Generalization of Klimontovich's S-Theorem for Open Systems and Boltzmann's Orthodes
We show that the nonadditive open systems can be studied in a consistent manner by using a generalized version of S-theorem. This new generalized S-theorem can further be considered as an indication of self-organization in nonadditive open systems as prescribed by Haken. The nonadditive S-theorem is then illustrated by using the modified Van der Pol oscillator. Finally, Tsallis entropy as an equilibrium entropy is studied by using Boltzmann's method of orthodes. This part of dissertation shows that Tsallis ensemble is on equal footing with the microcanonical, canonical and grand canonical ensembles. However, the associated entropy turns out to be Renyi entropy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9124/
Oligonucleotide guanosine conjugated to gallium nitride nano-structures for photonics.
In this work, I studied the hybrid system based on self-assembled guanosine crystal (SAGC) conjugated to wide-bandgap semiconductor gallium nitride (GaN). Guanosine is one of the four bases of DNA and has the lowest oxidation energy, which favors carrier transport. It also has large dipole moment. Guanosine molecules self-assemble to ribbon-like structure in confined space. GaN surface can have positive or negative polarity depending on whether the surface is Ga- or N-terminated. I studied SAGC in confined space between two electrodes. The current-voltage characteristics can be explained very well with the theory of metal-semiconductor-metal (MSM) structure. I-V curves also show strong rectification effect, which can be explained by the intrinsic polarization along the axis of ribbon-like structure of SAGC. GaN substrate property influences the properties of SAGC. So SAGC has semiconductor properties within the confined space up to 458nm. When the gap distance gets up to 484nm, the structure with guanosine shows resistance characteristics. The photocurrent measurements show that the bandgap of SAGC is about 3.3-3.4eV and affected by substrate properties. The MSM structure based on SAGC can be used as photodetector in UV region. Then I show that the periodic structure based on GaN and SAGC can have photonic bandgaps. The bandgap size and the band edges can be tuned by tuning lattice parameters. Light propagation and emission can be tuned by photonic crystals. So the hybrid photonic crystal can be potentially used to detect guanosine molecules. If guanosine molecules are used as functional linker to other biomolecules which usually absorb or emit light in blue to UV region, the hybrid photonic crystal can also be used to tune the coupling of light source to guanosine molecules, then to other biomolecules. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9065/
Emergence of Complexity from Synchronization and Cooperation
The dynamical origin of complexity is an object of intense debate and, up to moment of writing this manuscript, no unified approach exists as to how it should be properly addressed. This research work adopts the perspective of complexity as characterized by the emergence of non-Poisson renewal processes. In particular I introduce two new complex system models, namely the two-state stochastic clocks and the integrate-and-fire stochastic neurons, and investigate its coupled dynamics in different network topologies. Based on the foundations of renewal theory, I show how complexity, as manifested by the occurrence of non-exponential distribution of events, emerges from the interaction of the units of the system. Conclusion is made on the work's applicability to explaining the dynamics of blinking nanocrystals, neuron interaction in the human brain, and synchronization processes in complex networks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6107/
Microscopic Foundations of Thermodynamics and Generalized Statistical Ensembles
This dissertation aims at addressing two important theoretical questions which are still debated in the statistical mechanical community. The first question has to do with the outstanding problem of how to reconcile time-reversal asymmetric macroscopic laws with the time-reversal symmetric laws of microscopic dynamics. This problem is addressed by developing a novel mechanical approach inspired by the work of Helmholtz on monocyclic systems and the Heat Theorem, i.e., the Helmholtz Theorem. By following a line of investigation initiated by Boltzmann, a Generalized Helmholtz Theorem is stated and proved. This theorem provides us with a good microscopic analogue of thermodynamic entropy. This is the volume entropy, namely the logarithm of the volume of phase space enclosed by the constant energy hyper-surface. By using quantum mechanics only, it is shown that such entropy can only increase. This can be seen as a novel rigorous proof of the Second Law of Thermodynamics that sheds new light onto the arrow of time problem. The volume entropy behaves in a thermodynamic-like way independent of the number of degrees of freedom of the system, indicating that a whole thermodynamic-like world exists at the microscopic level. It is also shown that breaking of ergodicity leads to microcanonical phase transitions associated with nonanalyticities of volume entropy. The second part of the dissertation deals with the problem of the foundations of generalized ensembles in statistical mechanics. The starting point is Boltzmann's work on statistical ensembles and its relation with the Heat Theorem. We first focus on the nonextensive thermostatistics of Tsallis and the associated deformed exponential ensembles. These ensembles are analyzed in detail and proved (a) to comply with the requirements posed by the Heat Theorem, and (b) to interpolate between canonical and microcanonical ensembles. Further they are showed to describe finite systems in contact with finite heat baths. Their mechanical and information-theoretic foundation, are highlighted. Finally, a wide class of generalized ensembles is introduced, all of which reproduce the Heat Theorem. This class, named the class of dual orthodes, contains microcanonical, canonical, Tsallis and Gaussian ensembles as special cases. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6128/
Multifunctional Organic-Inorganic Hybrid Nanophotonic Devices
The emergence of optical applications, such as lasers, fiber optics, and semiconductor based sources and detectors, has created a drive for smaller and more specialized devices. Nanophotonics is an emerging field of study that encompasses the disciplines of physics, engineering, chemistry, biology, applied sciences and biomedical technology. In particular, nanophotonics explores optical processes on a nanoscale. This dissertation presents nanophotonic applications that incorporate various forms of the organic polymer N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPA) with inorganic semiconductors. This includes the material characterization of NIPA, with such techniques as ellipsometry and dynamic light scattering. Two devices were constructed incorporating the NIPA hydrogel with semiconductors. The first device comprises a PNIPAM-CdTe hybrid material. The PNIPAM is a means for the control of distances between CdTe quantum dots encapsulated within the hydrogel. Controlling the distance between the quantum dots allows for the control of resonant energy transfer between neighboring quantum dots. Whereby, providing a means for controlling the temperature dependent red-shifts in photoluminescent peaks and FWHM. Further, enhancement of photoluminescent due to increased scattering in the medium is shown as a function of temperature. The second device incorporates NIPA into a 2D photonic crystal patterned on GaAs. The refractive index change of the NIPA hydrogel as it undergoes its phase change creates a controllable mechanism for adjusting the transmittance of light frequencies through a linear defect in a photonic crystal. The NIPA infiltrated photonic crystal shows greater shifts in the bandwidth per ºC than any liquid crystal methods. This dissertation demonstrates the versatile uses of hydrogel, as a means of control in nanophotonic devices, and will likely lead to development of other hybrid applications. The development of smaller light based applications will facilitate the need to augment the devices with control mechanism and will play an increasing important role in the future. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6108/
Perturbation of renewal processes
Renewal theory began development in the early 1940s, as the need for it in the industrial engineering sub-discipline operations research had risen. In time, the theory found applications in many stochastic processes. In this thesis I investigated the effect of seasonal effects on Poisson and non-Poisson renewal processes in the form of perturbations. It was determined that the statistical analysis methods developed at UNT Center for Nonlinear Science can be used to detect the effects of seasonality on the data obtained from Poisson/non-Poisson renewal systems. It is proved that a perturbed Poisson process can serve as a paradigmatic model for a case where seasonality is correlated to the noise and that diffusion entropy method can be utilized in revealing this relation. A renewal model making a connection with the stochastic resonance phenomena is used to analyze a previous neurological experiment, and it was shown that under the effect of a nonlinear perturbation, a non-Poisson system statistics may make a transition and end up in the of Poisson basin of statistics. I determine that nonlinear perturbation of the power index for a complex system will lead to a change in the complexity characteristics of the system, i.e., the system will reach a new form of complexity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6140/
Anderson Localization in Two-Channel Wires with Correlated Disorder: DNA as an Application
This research studied the Anderson localization of electrons in two-channel wires with correlated disorder and in DNA molecules. It involved an analytical calculation part where the formula for the inverse localization length for electron states in a two-channel wire is derived. It also involved a computational part where the localization length is calculated for some DNA molecules. Electron localization in two-channel wires with correlated disorder was studied using a single-electron tight-binding model. Calculations were within second-order Born-approximation to second-order in disorder parameters. An analytical expression for localization length as a functional of correlations in potentials was found. Anderson localization in DNA molecules were studied in single-channel wire and two-channel models for electron transport in DNA. In both of the models, some DNA sequences exhibited delocalized electron states in their energy spectrum. Studies with two-channel wire model for DNA yielded important link between electron localization properties and genetic information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5204/
Neutron Transmutation and Hydrogenation Study of Hg₁₋xCdxTe
Anomalous Hall behavior of HgCdTe refers to a "double cross-over" feature of the Hall coefficient in p-type material, or a peak in the Hall mobility or Hall coefficient in n-type material. A magnetoconductivity tensor approach was utilized to identify presence of two electrons contributing to the conduction as well as transport properties of each electron in the material. The two electron model for the mobility shows that the anomalous Hall behavior results from the competition of two electrons, one in the energy gap graded region near the CdZnTe/HgCdTe interface with large band gap and the other in the bulk of the LPE film with narrow band gap. Hg0.78Cd0.22Te samples grown by LPE on CdZnTe(111B)-oriented substrates were exposed to various doses of thermal neutrons (~1.7 x 1016 - 1.25 x 1017 /cm2) and subsequently annealed at ~220oC for ~24h in Hg saturated vapor to recover damage and reduce the presence of Hg vacancies. Extensive Magnetotransport measurements were performed on these samples. SIMS profile for impurities produced by neutron irradiation was also obtained. The purpose for this study is to investigate the influence of neutron irradiation on this material as a basis for further study on HgCdTe74Se. The result shows that total mobility is observed to decrease with increased neutron dose and can be fitted by including a mobility inverse proportional to neutron dose. Electron introduction rate of thermal neutron is much smaller than that of fission neutrons. Total recovering of the material is suggested to have longer time annealing. Using Kane's model, we also fitted carrier concentration change at low temperature by introducing a donor level with activation energy changing with temperature. Results on Se diffusion in liquid phase epitaxy (LPE) grown HgCdTe epilayers is reported. The LPE Hg0.78Cd0.22Te samples were implanted with Se of 2.0×1014/cm2 at 100keV and annealed at 350-450oC in mercury saturated vapor. Secondary ions mass spectrometry (SIMS) profiles were obtained for each sample. From a Gaussian fit we find that the Se diffusion coefficient DSe is about one to two orders of magnitude smaller than that of arsenic. The as-implanted Se distribution is taken into account in case of small diffusion length in Gaussian fitting. Assuming a Te vacancy based mechanism, the Arrhenius relationship yields an activation energy 1.84eV. Dislocations introduced in HgCdTe materials result in two energy levels, where one is a donor and one is an acceptor. Hydrogenation treatment can effectively neutralize these dislocation defect levels. Both experimental results and theoretical calculation show that the mobility due to dislocation scattering remains constant in the low temperature range (<77K), and increases with temperature between 77K and 150K. Dislocation scattering has little effect on electrical transport properties of HgCdTe with an EPD lower than 107/cm2. Dislocations may have little effect on carrier concentration for semiconductor material with zinc blende structure due to self compensation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9126/
A Novel Process for GeSi Thin Film Synthesis
A unique process of fabricating a strained layer GexSi1-x on insulator is demonstrated. Such strained heterostructures are useful in the fabrication of high-mobility transistors. This technique incorporates well-established silicon processing technology e.g., ion implantation and thermal oxidation. A dilute GeSi layer is initially formed by implanting Ge+ into a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) substrate. Thermal oxidation segregates the Ge at the growing oxide interface to form a distinct GexSi1-x thin-film with a composition that can be tailored by controlling the oxidation parameters (e.g. temperature and oxidation ambient). In addition, the film thickness can be controlled by implantation fluence, which is important since the film forms pseudomorphically below 2×1016 Ge/cm2. Continued oxidation consumes the underlying Si leaving the strained GeSi film encapsulated by the two oxide layers, i.e. the top thermal oxide and the buried oxide. Removal of the thermal oxide by a dilute HF etch completes the process. Strain relaxation can be achieved by either of two methods. One involves vacancy injection by ion implantation to introduce sufficient open-volume within the film to compensate for the compressive strain. The other depends upon the formation of GeO2. If Ge is oxidized in the absence of Si, it evaporates as GeO(g) resulting in spontaneous relaxation within the strained film. Conditions under which this occurs have been discussed along with elaborated results of oxidation kinetics of Ge-ion implanted silicon. Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS), ion channeling, Raman spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were used as the characterization techniques. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5167/
Fractional Brownian motion and dynamic approach to complexity.
The dynamic approach to fractional Brownian motion (FBM) establishes a link between non-Poisson renewal process with abrupt jumps resetting to zero the system's memory and correlated dynamic processes, whose individual trajectories keep a non-vanishing memory of their past time evolution. It is well known that the recrossing times of the origin by an ordinary 1D diffusion trajectory generates a distribution of time distances between two consecutive origin recrossing times with an inverse power law with index m=1.5. However, with theoretical and numerical arguments, it is proved that this is the special case of a more general condition, insofar as the recrossing times produced by the dynamic FBM generates process with m=2-H. Later, the model of ballistic deposition is studied, which is as a simple way to establish cooperation among the columns of a growing surface, to show that cooperation generates memory properties and, at same time, non-Poisson renewal events. Finally, the connection between trajectory and density memory is discussed, showing that the trajectory memory does not necessarily yields density memory, and density memory might be compatible with the existence of abrupt jumps resetting to zero the system's memory. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3992/
Studying Interactions of Gas Molecules with Nanomaterials Loaded in a Microwave Resonant Cavity
A resonant cavity operating in TE011 mode was used to study the adsorption response of single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) and other nanomaterials for different types of gas molecules. The range of the frequency signal as a probe was chosen as geometry dependent range between 9.1 -9.8 GHz. A highly specific range can be studied for further experiments dependent on the type of molecule being investigated. It was found that for different pressures of gases and for different types of nanomaterials, there was a different response in the shifts of the probe signal for each cycle of gassing and degassing of the cavity. This dissertation suggests that microwave spectroscopy of a complex medium of gases and carbon nanotubes can be used as a highly sensitive technique to determine the complex dielectric response of different polar as well as non-polar gases when subjected to intense electromagnetic fields within the cavity. Also, as part of the experimental work, a range of other micro-porous materials was tested using the residual gas analysis (RGA) technique to determine their intrinsic absorption/adsorption characteristics when under an ultra-high vacuum environment. The scientific results obtained from this investigation, led to the development of a chemical biological sensor prototype. The method proposed is to develop operational sensors to detect toxin gases for homeland security applications and also develop sniffers to detect toxin drugs for law enforcement agency personnel. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4009/
Complexity as Aging Non-Poisson Renewal Processes
The search for a satisfactory model for complexity, meant as an intermediate condition between total order and total disorder, is still subject of debate in the scientific community. In this dissertation the emergence of non-Poisson renewal processes in several complex systems is investigated. After reviewing the basics of renewal theory, another popular approach to complexity, called modulation, is introduced. I show how these two different approaches, given a suitable choice of the parameter involved, can generate the same macroscopic outcome, namely an inverse power law distribution density of events occurrence. To solve this ambiguity, a numerical instrument, based on the theoretical analysis of the aging properties of renewal systems, is introduced. The application of this method, called renewal aging experiment, allows us to distinguish if a time series has been generated by a renewal or a modulation process. This method of analysis is then applied to several physical systems, from blinking quantum dots, to the human brain activity, to seismic fluctuations. Theoretical conclusions about the underlying nature of the considered complex systems are drawn. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3706/
Characterization, Properties and Applications of Novel Nanostructured Hydrogels.
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The characterization, properties and applications of the novel nanostructured microgel (nanoparticle network and microgel crystal) composed of poly-N-isopropylacrylanmide-co-allylamine (PNIPAM-co-allylamine) and PNIPAM-co-acrylic acid(AA) have been investigated. For the novel nanostructured hydrogels with the two levels of structure: the primary network inside each individual particle and the secondary network of the crosslinked nanoparticles, the new shear modulus, drug release law from hydrogel with heterogeneous structure have been studied. The successful method for calculating the volume fraction related the phase transition of colloid have been obtained. The kinetics of crystallization in an aqueous dispersion of PNIPAM particles has been explored using UV-visible transmission spectroscopy. This dissertation also includes the initial research on the melting behavior of colloidal crystals composed of PNIPAM microgels. Many new findings in this study area have never been reported before. The theoretical model for the columnar crystal growth from the top to bottom of PNIPAM microgel has been built, which explains the growth mechanism of the novel columnar hydrogel colloidal crystals. Since the unique structure of the novel nanostructured hydrogels, their properties are different with the conventional hydrogels and the hard-sphere-like system. The studies and results in this dissertation have the important significant for theoretical study and valuable application of these novel nanostructured hydrogels. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5605/
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