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Effect of Size-Dependent Thermal Instability on Synthesis of Zn2 SiO4-SiOx Core–Shell Nanotube Arrays and Their Cathodoluminescence Properties

Chun Li1*, Yoshio Bando1, Benjamin Dierre2, Takashi Sekiguchi2, Yang Huang1, Jing Lin1 and Dmitri Golberg1

Author Affiliations

1 World Premier International Center for Materials Nanoarchitectonics (MANA), National Institute for Materials Science, Namiki 1-1, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, 305-004, Japan

2 Advanced Electronic Materials Center, National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), Namiki 1-1, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, 305-0044, Japan

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2010, 5:773-780  doi:10.1007/s11671-010-9556-7

Published: 10 February 2010


Vertically aligned Zn2SiO4-SiOx(x < 2) core–shell nanotube arrays consisting of Zn2SiO4-nanoparticle chains encapsulated into SiOx nanotubes and SiOx-coated Zn2SiO4 coaxial nanotubes were synthesized via one-step thermal annealing process using ZnO nanowire (ZNW) arrays as templates. The appearance of different nanotube morphologies was due to size-dependent thermal instability and specific melting of ZNWs. With an increase in ZNW diameter, the formation mechanism changed from decomposition of “etching” to Rayleigh instability and then to Kirkendall effect, consequently resulting in polycrystalline Zn2SiO4-SiOx coaxial nanotubes, single-crystalline Zn2SiO4-nanoparticle-chain-embedded SiOx nanotubes, and single-crystalline Zn2SiO4-SiOx coaxial nanotubes. The difference in spatially resolved optical properties related to a particular morphology was efficiently documented by means of cathodoluminescence (CL) spectroscopy using a middle-ultraviolet emission at 310 nm from the Zn2SiO4 phase.

Nano-template; Core–shell nanotube; Cathodoluminescence; Zinc Silicate; Rayleigh instability; Kirkendall effect