Scientists are developing a new family of “2D” materials with promising applications

Researchers say the material has promising applications, such as advanced electronics and high-capacity batteries.

The School of Science and Technology at Tulane University has created a new family two-dimensional materials with promising applications including advanced electronics and high capacity batteries.

The study, led by Michael Nagib, an associate professor of physics and engineering physics, was published in the journal Advanced materials.

“Two-dimensional materials are nanomaterials with a thickness of nanometers (nanometers are one millionth of a millimeter) and side dimensions that are thousands of times thicker,” Nagib said. “Their plane offers a unique set of properties compared to bulk materials.”

A new family of 2D materials is called transition metal carbochalides, or TMCC. It combines the characteristics of two families of two-dimensional materials – transition metal carbides and transition metal dichalcogenides.

According to Nagib, professor of early career in science and technology Ken & Ruth Arnold, the latter is a broad family of materials that have been extensively researched and shown to be very promising, especially for electrochemical storage and energy conversion. However, he said that one of the difficulties of their use is their poor electrical conductivity and stability.

Michael Nagib Tulein University

Michael Nagib, Professor of Early Careers in Science and Technology Ken & Ruth Arnold, is an expert in the storage of two-dimensional materials and electrochemical energy. Credit: Paul Burch-Chelenton

On the other hand, he said, transition metal carbides are excellent conductors with much more powerful conductivity. It is expected that merging the two families into one will have great potential for many applications such as batteries and supercapacitors, catalysis, sensors and electronics.

“Instead of containing two different materials, such as Lego building blocks, with many problematic interfaces, we are developing a new 2D material that combines both compositions without an interface,” he said.

“We used an electrochemical exfoliation process to insert lithium ions between layers of transition metal carbohydrate masses followed by stirring in water,” said Ahmad Majd, first author and doctor of materials physics and engineer at Tulayne, who works for the Nagib group.

Unlike other exotic nanomaterials, Majad said, the process of creating these 2D TMCC nanomaterials is simple and scalable.

In addition to Nagib and Majeed, the team includes Jiang Wei, an associate professor of physics and engineering physics; Jianwei Sun, Associate Professor of Physics and Engineering Physics; Candidates of PhD Caitlin Prenger, Manish Kotakonda and Faye Van in Tulane; and Dr. Eric N. Tseng and Professor Per OA. Person from Linkoping University in Sweden.

This study was supported by the Nagib National Science Foundation Career Award, which he received less than a year ago.

Reference: TMCC Transition Metal Carbochaloride: A New Family of 2D Materials by Ahmad Majed, Manish Kotakonda, Fei Wang, Eric N. Tseng, Caitlin Prenger, Xiaodong Zhang, Per OA Person, Jiang Wei, Jiang Su and Michael Nagib, April 13, 2022, Advanced materials.
DOI: 10.1002 / adma.202200574

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