Formation Mechanism of CaTiO3 Hollow Crystals with Different Microstructures

Xianfeng Yang, Junxiang Fu, Chongjun Jin, Jian Chen, Chaolun Liang, Mingmei Wu, Wuzong Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

175 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The crystal growth of CaTiO3 hollow crystals with different microstructures has been investigated. In a water-free poly(ethylene glycol) 200 (PEG-200) solution, CaTiO3 nanocubes formed first. The nanocubes underwent an oriented self-assembly into spherical particles, enhanced by the surface-adsorbed polymer molecules. Since the growth of nanocubes and their aggregation took place simultaneously, the nanocubes in the outer shells were larger than those in the cores. Disappearance of the small nanocubes in the cores of the spheres during an Ostwald ripening process led to spherical hollow crystals. Addition of a small amount of water (1.25 vol %) in the polymer solution enhanced surface recrystallization of the aggregated spheres, forming a cubic morphology. The orthorhombic distortion of the perovskite CaTiO3 structure did not have a significant effect on the nanocube aggregation, resulting in a domain structure in the shells. Single-crystalline hollow cubes were produced with a slightly higher water content, e.g., 5 vol %. This process of (1) aggregation of nanocubes and (2) surface crystallization followed by (3) surface-to-core extension of recrystallization gives a good example of the reversed crystal growth route in ceramic materials. The proposed formation mechanism of the hollow CaTiO3 crystals would enable us to control the microstructures of these materials and to explain the formation of many other hollow crystals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14279-14287
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Volume132
Issue number40
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Oct 2010

Keywords

  • HYDROTHERMAL SYNTHESIS
  • NANOCRYSTALS
  • NANOSTRUCTURES
  • NANOCAGES
  • GROWTH
  • SHAPE
  • CU2O
  • NANOBOXES
  • TITANATE
  • SURFACE

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