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Electrochemical Synthesis and Applications of Layered Double Hydroxides and Derivatives

Description: Layered double hydroxides (LDH) are a class of anionic clay with alternating layers of positive and negative charge. A metal hydroxide layer with divalent and trivalent metals with a positive charge is complemented by an interlayer region containing anions and water with a negative charge. The anions can be exchanged under favorable conditions. Hydrotalcite (Mg6Al2(OH)16[CO3]·4H2O) and other variations are naturally occurring minerals. Synthetic LDH can be prepared as a powder or film by numerous methods. Synthetic LDH is used in electrode materials, adsorbents, nuclear waste treatment, drug delivery systems, water treatment, corrosion protection coatings, and catalysis. In this dissertation Zn-Al-NO3 derivatives of zaccagnaite (Zn4Al2(OH)12[CO3]·3H2O) are electrochemically synthesized as films and applied to sensing and corrosion resistance applications. First, Zn-Al-NO3 LDH was potentiostatically electrosynthesized on glassy carbon substrates and applied to the electrochemical detection of gallic acid and caffeic acid in aqueous solutions. The modified electrode was then applied to the detection of gallic acid in green tea samples. The focus of the work shifts to corrosion protection of stainless steel. Modified zaccagnaite films were electrodeposited onto stainless steel in multiples layers to reduce defects caused by drying of the films. The films were deposited using a step potential method. The corrosion resistance of the films in a marine environment was investigated while immersed in 3.5 wt.% NaCl environments. Next modified zaccagnaite films were potentiostatically electrodeposited onto stainless steel followed by a hydrophobization reaction with palmitic acid in order to prepare superhydrophobic (>150° contact angle) surfaces. Each parameter of the film synthesis was optimized to produce a surface with the highest possible contact angle. The fifth chapter examines the corrosion resistance of the optimized superhydrophobic film and a hydrophobic film. The hydrophobic film is prepared using the same procedure as the superhydrophobic film except for a difference in electrodeposition potential. The ...
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Date: August 2015
Creator: Kahl, Michael S.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Novel Carborane Derived Semiconducting Thin Films for Neutron Detection and Device Applications

Description: Novel carborane (B10C2H12) and aromatic compounds (benzene, pyridine, diaminobenzene) copolymers and composite materials have been fabricated by electron beam induced cross-linking and plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) respectively. Chemical and electronic structure of these materials were studied using X-ray and ultra-violet photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS and UPS). UPS suggest that the systematic tuning of electronic structure can be achieved by using different aromatic compounds as co-precursors during the deposition. Furthermore, top of valence band is composed of states from the aromatic moieties implying that states near bottom of the conduction band is derived from carborane moieties. Current- voltage (I-V) measurements on the ebeam derived B10C2HX: Diaminobenzene films suggest that these films exhibit enhanced electron hole separation life time. Enhanced electron hole separation and charge transport are critical parameters in designing better neutron voltaic devices. Recently, PECVD composite films of ortho-carborane and pyridine exhibited enhanced neutron detection efficiency even under zero bias compared to the pure ortho-carborane derived films. This enhancement is most likely due to longer electron-hole separation, better charge transport or a combination of both. The studies determining the main factors for the observed enhanced neutron detection are in progress by fabricating composite films of carborane with other aromatic precursors and by altering the plasma deposition conditions. This research will facilitate the development of highly sensitive and cost effective neutron detectors, and has potential applications in spintronics and photo-catalysis.
Date: August 2015
Creator: James, Robinson
Partner: UNT Libraries

Thin Cr2O3 (0001) Films and Co (0001) Films Fabrication for Spintronics

Description: The growth of Co (0001) films and Cr2O3 (0001)/Co (0001) has been investigated using surface analysis methods. Such films are of potential importance for a variety of spintronics applications. Co films were directly deposited on commercial Al2O3 (0001) substrates by magnetron sputter deposition or by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE), with thicknesses of ~1000Å or 30Å, respectively. Low Energy Electron Diffraction (LEED) shows hexagonal (1x1) pattern for expected epitaxial films grown at 800 K to ensure the hexagonally close-packed structure. X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS) indicates the metallic cobalt binding energy for Co (2p3/2) peak, which is at 778.1eV. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) indicates the root mean square (rms) roughness of Co films has been dramatically reduced from 10 nm to 0.6 nm by optimization of experiment parameters, especially Ar pressure during plasma deposition. Ultrathin Cr2O3 films (10 to 25 Å) have been successfully fabricated on 1000Å Co (0001) films by MBE. LEED data indicate Cr2O3 has C6v symmetry and bifurcated spots from Co to Cr2O3 with Cr2O3 thickness less than 6 Å. XPS indicates the binding energy of Cr 2p(3/2) is at 576.6eV which is metallic oxide peak. XPS also shows the growth of Cr2O3 on Co (0001) form a thin Cobalt oxide interface, which is stable after exposure to ambient and 1000K UHV anneal.
Date: December 2015
Creator: Cao, Yuan
Partner: UNT Libraries