Electrochemistry of Single Nanoparticles
Dr. Xiuting Li
Dr Xiuting Li obtained her PhD degree in Physical and Theoretical Chemistry at Oxford University under the supervision of Professor Richard G. Compton. Her research focuses on the electrochemistry of single nanoparticles by using the electrochemical particle impact technique. She has published more than 20 papers in journals such as Angew. Chem., ACS Catal. and J. Phys.Chem. Lett. etc.
Electron transfer at solid/liquid interfaces underpins energy transformation science and technology most notably in fuel cells, solar cells and batteries. We use a state of the art electrochemical method—‘nano-impact’ (or particle-electrode impacts) to study mechanism and kinetics of some key reactions in energy conversion and storage applications, such as hydrogen oxidation, oxygen reduction, methanol and formic acid oxidation, on single catalytic entities, typically metal nanoparticle decorated carbon nanotubes.This technique, based on Brownian collisions of nanomaterials with an electrode held at a suitable potential, enables nanomaterials to be individually electro-reduced or oxidised, or mediate (catalyse) electron transfer processes at its nanoscale surface. It successfully avoids the complexity from polydispersity, different particle orientations, formation of the likely agglomerated and irregular ‘mat’associated with the conventional macroscopic drop-cast technique. This entirely fresh way of studying nanoparticles, their reactivity and catalytic properties is able to provide a greater mechanistic understanding of the electron transfer processes.
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