This disclosure provides boron nitride nanosheets, and methods of making and using the same. The boron nitride nanosheets may be made by heating solid boron, magnesium oxide and iron oxide compounds in a furnace in the presence of ammonia gas and a substrate, such that the boron nitride nanosheet is deposited on the substrate, where the boron nitride nanosheet comprises a first end, a second end, and a sheet between the first and second ends, where the first end is engaged with the substrate and the sheet extends upward away from the substrate and then curls back towards the substrate so that the second end is oriented towards the substrate.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY FUNDED RESEARCH
 This invention was made with U.S. Government support under CAREER Award 0447555 and Award 1261910 from the National Science Foundation, and Grant No. DE-FG02-06ER46294 from the Department of Energy. The U.S. Government has certain rights in the invention.