|Posted on May 14, 2014 at 11:10 PM|
(Audrey Forticaux performing optical microscopy of nanoplates.)
Audrey Forticaux, a graduate student in the Jin Group (U. Wisc. Madison), won first place in the 2014 MRS Spring "Science as Art" competition. She showed that ZnO nanorods epitaxially grown on CuGaO2 nanoplates in aqueous solution not only nucleate preferentially on a CuGaO2 substrate, but could also nucleate into interesting forms and shapes - like a lady bug. The addition of color to the SEM image of ZnO nanorods brings to life the smallest "nano" lady bug in the world.
Mesoscale materials built from nanomaterial building blocks, such as Audrey's, are attractive solutions for applications ranging from photovoltaics to nanoelectronics and biomedical synthetic tissues. These materials have the advantage that they exhibit the characteristics of both 1D and 3D materials. Audrey's work in the synthesis and characterization of ZnO nanorods grown on CuGaO2 were published in ACS Nano in August 2013.
(Audrey Forticaux preparing the flow cell setup. This was used to grow thin ZnO nanowires, while she used vials to grow thick wires like in the lady nanobug image.)
(Photo credits: Forticaux: Provided by and used with permission from Audrey Forticaux; Ladybug: Image courtesy of the Materials Research Society (www.mrs.org) Science as Art Competition and Audrey S. Forticaux, University of Wisconsin-Madison).