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Hydrothermal synthesis of nanocubes of sillenite type compounds for photovoltaic applications and solar energy conversion of carbon dioxide to fuels

United States Patent

April 29, 2014
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
The present invention relates to formation of nanocubes of sillenite type compounds, such as bismuth titanate, i.e., Bi.sub.12TiO.sub.20, nanocubes, via a hydrothermal synthesis process, with the resulting compound(s) having multifunctional properties such as being useful in solar energy conversion, environmental remediation, and/or energy storage, for example. In one embodiment, a hydrothermal method is disclosed that transforms nanoparticles of TiO.sub.2 to bismuth titanate, i.e., Bi.sub.12TiO.sub.20, nanocubes, optionally loaded with palladium nanoparticles. The method includes reacting titanium dioxide nanotubes with a bismuth salt in an acidic bath at a temperature sufficient and for a time sufficient to form bismuth titanate crystals, which are subsequently annealed to form bismuth titanate nanocubes. After annealing, the bismuth titanate nanocubes may be optionally loaded with nano-sized metal particles, e.g., nanosized palladium particles.
Subramanian; Vaidyanathan (Sparks, NV), Murugesan; Sankaran (Austin, TX)
Board of Regents of the Nevada System of Higher Education, on behalf of the University of Nevada, Reno (Reno, NV), N/A (N/A)
12/ 967,922
December 14, 2010
GOVERNMENT LICENSE RIGHTS This invention was made with government support under Grant Number DE-EE0000272, awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy; the United States federal government, therefore, has certain rights in the invention.