Matching Items (3)

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Characterization of Liquid-Phase Exfoliated Two-Dimensional Nanomaterials Derived from Non-van der Waals Solids

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Liquid-phase exfoliation (LPE) is a straightforward and scalable method of producing two-dimensional nanomaterials. The LPE process has typical been applied to layered van der Waals (vdW) solids, such as graphite

Liquid-phase exfoliation (LPE) is a straightforward and scalable method of producing two-dimensional nanomaterials. The LPE process has typical been applied to layered van der Waals (vdW) solids, such as graphite and transition metal dichalcogenides, which have layers held together by weak van der Waals interactions. However, recent research has shown that solids with stronger bonds and non-layered structures can be converted to solution-stabilized nanosheets via LPE, some of which have shown to have interesting optical, magnetic, and photocatalytic properties. In this work, two classes of non-vdW solids – hexagonal metal diborides and boron carbide – are investigated for their morphological features, their chemical and crystallographic compositions, and their solvent preference for exfoliation. Spectroscopic and microscopic techniques are used to verify the composition and crystal structure of metal diboride nanosheets. Their application as mechanical fillers is demonstrated by incorporation into polymer nanocomposite films of polyvinyl alcohol and by successful integration into liquid photocurable 3D printing resins. Application of Hansen solubility theory to two metal diboride compositions enables extrapolation of their affinities for certain solvents and is also used to find solvent blends suitable for the nanosheets. Boron carbide nanosheets are examined for their size and thickness and their exfoliation planes are computationally analyzed and experimentally investigated using high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. The resulting analyses indicate that the exfoliation of boron carbide leads to multiple observed exfoliation planes upon LPE processing. Overall, these studies provide insight into the production and applications of LPE-produced nanosheets derived from non-vdW solids and suggest their potential application as mechanical fillers in polymer nanocomposites.

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Date Created
  • 2020

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Liquid-phase exfoliation and applications of pristine two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides and metal diborides

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Ultrasonication-mediated liquid-phase exfoliation has emerged as an efficient method for producing large quantities of two-dimensional materials such as graphene, boron nitride, and transition metal dichalcogenides. This thesis explores the use

Ultrasonication-mediated liquid-phase exfoliation has emerged as an efficient method for producing large quantities of two-dimensional materials such as graphene, boron nitride, and transition metal dichalcogenides. This thesis explores the use of this process to produce a new class of boron-rich, two-dimensional materials, namely metal diborides, and investigate their properties using bulk and nanoscale characterization methods. Metal diborides are a class of structurally related materials that contain hexagonal sheets of boron separated by metal atoms with applications in superconductivity, composites, ultra-high temperature ceramics and catalysis. To demonstrate the utility of these materials, chromium diboride was incorporated in polyvinyl alcohol as a structural reinforcing agent. These composites not only showed mechanical strength greater than the polymer itself, but also demonstrated superior reinforcing capability to previously well-known two-dimensional materials. Understanding their dispersion behavior and identifying a range of efficient dispersing solvents is an important step in identifying the most effective processing methods for the metal diborides. This was accomplished by subjecting metal diborides to ultrasonication in more than thirty different organic solvents and calculating their surface energy and Hansen solubility parameters. This thesis also explores the production and covalent modification of pristine, unlithiated molybdenum disulfide using ultrasonication-mediated exfoliation and subsequent diazonium functionalization. This approach allows a variety of functional groups to be tethered on the surface of molybdenum disulfide while preserving its semiconducting properties. The diazonium chemistry is further exploited to attach fluorescent proteins on its surface making it amenable to future biological applications. Furthermore, a general approach for delivery of anticancer drugs using pristine two-dimensional materials is also detailed here. This can be achieved by using two-dimensional materials dispersed in a non-ionic and biocompatible polymer, as nanocarriers for delivering the anticancer drug doxorubicin. The potency of this supramolecular assembly for certain types of cancer cell lines can be improved by using folic-acid-conjugated polymer as a dispersing agent due to strong binding between folic acid present on the nanocarriers and folate receptors expressed on the cells. These results show that ultrasonication-mediated liquid-phase exfoliation is an effective method for facilitating the production and diverse application of pristine two-dimensional metal diborides and transition metal dichalcogenides.

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Date Created
  • 2018

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Eradication of multidrug-resistant bacteria using biomolecule-encapsulated two-dimensional materials

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The increasing pervasiveness of infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria (MDR) is a major global health issue that has been further exacerbated by the dearth of antibiotics developed over the past

The increasing pervasiveness of infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria (MDR) is a major global health issue that has been further exacerbated by the dearth of antibiotics developed over the past 40 years. Drug-resistant bacteria have led to significant morbidity and mortality, and ever-increasing antibiotic resistance threatens to reverse many of the medical advances enabled by antibiotics over the last 40 years. The traditional strategy for combating these superbugs involves the development of new antibiotics. Yet, only two new classes of antibiotics have been introduced to the clinic over the past two decades, and both failed to combat broad spectrum gram-negative bacteria. This situation demands alternative strategies to combat drug-resistant superbugs. Herein, these dissertation reports the development of potent antibacterials based on biomolecule-encapsulated two-dimensional inorganic materials, which combat multidrug-resistant bacteria using alternative mechanisms of strong physical interactions with bacterial cell membrane. These systems successfully eliminate all members of the ‘Superbugs’ set of pathogenic bacteria, which are known for developing antibiotic resistance, providing an alternative to the limited ‘one bug-one drug’ approach that is conventionally used. Furthermore, these systems demonstrate a multimodal antibacterial killing mechanism that induces outer membrane destabilization, unregulated ion movement across the membranes, induction of oxidative stress, and finally apoptotic-like cell death. In addition, a peptide-encapsulation of the two-dimensional material successfully eliminated biofilms and persisters at micromolar concentrations. Overall, these novel systems have great potential as next-generation antimicrobial agents for eradication of broad spectrum multidrug-resistant bacteria.

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Date Created
  • 2019