Dr. Mietek Jaroniec

"Ordered Nanoporous Materials"

One of the major research fields in the Chemistry Department has been LC- and block copolymer-templated synthesis of ordered nanoporous materials (ONMs) of tailored porous structures, surface chemistry and morphology for various applications ranging from adsorption, catalysis, environmental cleanup, energy conversion and storage to nanotechnology, biotechnology and medicine. Dr. Jaroniec’s group has been very active in this field of research with continuous NSF support.1-4 While significant progress has been made by this group in relation to ordered nanoporous silicas, organosilicas, and carbons, the ability to design the composite metal/metal oxide-carbon nanostructures for adsorption, catalysis and photocatalysis, especially for energy and environmentally related applications (see reviews [5], [6], [7], and references therein), is still insufficient. There is a great challenge to obtain ordered nanoporous carbons (ONCs) with uniformly and highly dispersed metal and metal oxide nanoparticles because of their tendency for agglomeration and reduction, respectively.

Self-assembly synthesis is a powerful method for the synthesis of various ONMs; therefore, this strategy will be used for the preparation of metal- and metal oxide-carbon composites. In order to avoid agglomeration and/or reduction of metal/metal oxide nanoparticles during carbonization, these nanoparticles will be coated with a silica layer.8 The resulting metal- or metal oxide-silica core-shell particles will be used in the self-assembly synthesis of ONCs. The protective silica shells will preserve these particles and can be dissolved after carbonization. The specific REU projects will be focused on the preparation of suitable metal- or metal oxide-silica core-shell particles and their use in soft-templating synthesis of ONC-based composites. A special emphasis will be given to carbon nanostructures containing Ti, Bi, Fe, Ni, and Mn oxide nanoparticles, which are important in catalysis and photocatalysis, including degradation of pollutants and fabrication of electrodes for batteries and solar cells. The students in this project will learn self-assembly and templating strategies for synthesis of nanomaterials for environmental and energy-related applications as well as techniques such as gas adsorption, thermogravimetry, elemental analysis, X-ray diffraction, SEM, TEM, solid state NMR and FT-IR.

  1. E.B. Celer and M. Jaroniec, Temperature-programmed microwave-assisted synthesis of SBA-15 ordered mesoporous silica, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 128, 14408-14414 (2006).
  2. O. Olkhovyk, M. Jaroniec, Periodic mesoporous organosilica with large heterocyclic bridging groups, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 127, 60-61 (2005).
  3. S.M. Morris, P.F. Fulvio, and M. Jaroniec, Ordered mesoporous alumina-supported metal oxides, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 130, 15210-15216 (2008).
  4. K.P. Gierszal and M. Jaroniec, Carbons with extremely large volume of uniform mesopores synthesized by carbonization of phenolic resin film formed on colloidal silica template, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 128, 10026-10027 (2006).
  5. Q. Xiang, J. Yu, and M. Jaroniec, Graphene-based semiconductor photocatalysts (review). Chem. Soc. Rev. 41, 782-796 (2012).
  6. S. Liu, J. Yu, and M. Jaroniec: Anatase TiO2 with dominant high-energy {001} facets (review). Chem. Mater. 23, 4085-4093 (2011).
  7. (a) S. Liu, J. Yu, B. Cheng, and M. Jaroniec, Fluorinated Semiconductor Photocatalysts: Tunable Synthesis and Unique Properties (review). Adv. Colloid Interface Sci. 173, 35-53 (2012); (b) B.J. Jankiewicz, D. Jamiola, J. Choma, and M. Jaroniec, Silica-metal core-shell nanostructures (review), Adv. Colloid Interface Sci. 170, 28-47 (2012).
  8. J. Choma, D. Jamioła, K. Augustynek, M. Marszewski, M. Gao, and M. Jaroniec, New opportunities in Stöber synthesis: Preparation of microporous and mesoporous carbon spheres, J. Mater. Chem. 22, 12636-12642 (2012).