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Lab Spotlight: Argonne - Nanocrystals

ANL Nanocrystals

In order to invent new materials to use in better batteries, solar cells and other technological advances, scientists must delve deeply into the nanoscale—the nearly atomic scale where structures determine how materials react with each other. At the nanoscale, anything can happen; materials can change colors and form into astonishing structures. These are some of the results from studies at the nanoscale at Argonne National Laboratory’s Center for Nanoscale Materials.

The colorful pattern represents a film of 7.5-nanometer lead sulfide nanocrystals evaporated on top of a silicon wafer. The islands are formed by micron-size “supercrystals”—faceted 3D assemblies of the same nanocrystals. The picture is a true, unaltered image, obtained with an optical microscope in reflected light mode.

Photo courtesy of Argonne National Laboratory.

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