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Open Access Nano Express

Self Assembly and Properties of C:WO3 Nano-Platelets and C:VO2/V2O5 Triangular Capsules Produced by Laser Solution Photolysis

BW Mwakikunga123*, A Forbes15, E Sideras-Haddad24, M Scriba6 and E Manikandan6

Author Affiliations

1 CSIR National Laser Centre, P. O. Box 395, Pretoria, 0001, South Africa

2 DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Strong Materials and School of Physics, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

3 Department of Physics, University of Malawi-The Polytechnic, Private Bag 303, Chichiri, Blantyre 3, Malawi

4 iThemba LABS, Private Bag 11, Wits 2050, Jan Smuts & Empire Rd., Johannesburg, South Africa

5 School of Physics, University of Kwazulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban, 4000, South Africa

6 DST/CSIR National Centre for Nano-Structured Materials, P. O. Box 395, Pretoria, South Africa

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2009, 5:389-397  doi:10.1007/s11671-009-9494-4

Published: 1 December 2009

Abstract

Laser photolysis of WCl6 in ethanol and a specific mixture of V2O5 and VCl3 in ethanol lead to carbon modified vanadium and tungsten oxides with interesting properties. The presence of graphene’s aromatic rings (from the vibrational frequency of 1,600 cm−1) together with C–C bonding of carbon (from the Raman shift of 1,124 cm−1) present unique optical, vibrational, electronic and structural properties of the intended tungsten trioxide and vanadium dioxide materials. The morphology of these samples shows nano-platelets in WOx samples and, in VOx samples, encapsulated spherical quantum dots in conjunction with fullerenes of VOx. Conductivity studies revealed that the VO2/V2O5 nanostructures are more sensitive to Cl than to the presence of ethanol, whereas the C:WO3 nano-platelets are more sensitive to ethanol than atomic C.

Keywords:
Carbon; VO2; V2O5; WO3; Laser; Photolysis; Sensors