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21 April 2017 Order from the disorder: hierarchical nanostructures self-assembled from the gas phase (Conference Presentation)
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The assembly of nanoscale building blocks in engineered mesostructures is one of the fundamental goals of nanotechnology. Among the various processes developed to date, self-assembly emerges as one of the most promising, since it relays solely on basic physico-chemical forces. Our research is focused on a new type of self-assembly strategy from the gas-phase: Scattered Ballistic Deposition (SBD). SBD arises from the interaction of a supersonic molecular beam with a static gas and enables the growth of quasi-1D hierarchical mesostructures. Overall, they resemble a forest composed of individual, high aspect-ratio, tree-like structures, assembled from amorphous or crystalline nanoparticles. SBD is a general occurring phenomenon and can be obtained with different vapour or cluster sources. In particular, SBD by Pulsed Laser Deposition is a convenient physical vapor technique that allows the generation of supersonic plasma jets from any inorganic material irrespective of melting temperature, preserving even the most complex stoichiometries. One of the advantages of PLD over other vapour deposition techniques is extremely wide operational pressure range, from UHV to ambient pressure. These characteristics allowed us to develop quasi-1D hierarchical nanostructures from different transition metal oxides, semiconductors and metals. The precise control offered by the SBD-PLD technique over material properties at the nanoscale allowed us to fabricate ultra-thin, high efficiency hierarchical porous photonic crystals with Bragg reflectivity up to 85%.

In this communication we will discuss the application of these materials to solar energy harvesting and storage, stimuli responsive photonic crystals and smart surfaces with digital control of their wettability behaviour.
Conference Presentation
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Fabio Di Fonzo "Order from the disorder: hierarchical nanostructures self-assembled from the gas phase (Conference Presentation)", Proc. SPIE 10093, Synthesis and Photonics of Nanoscale Materials XIV, 100930C (21 April 2017);

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