Electrical Transport Properties of Large, Individual NiCo2O4 Nanoplates



Understanding the electrical transport properties of individual semiconductor nanostructures is crucial to advancing their practical applications in high-performance nanodevices. Large-sized individual nanostructures with smooth surfaces are preferred because they can be easily made into nanodevices using conventional photolithography procedures rather than having to rely on costly and complex electron-beam lithography techniques. In this study, micrometer-sized NiCo2O4 nanoplates are successfully prepared from their corresponding hydroxide precursor using a quasi-topotactic transformation. The Co/Ni atomic arrangement shows no changes during the transformation from the rhombohedral LDH precursor (space group Requation imagem) to the cubic NiCo2O4 spinel (space group Fdequation imagem), and the nanoplate retains its initial morphology during the conversion process. In particular, electrical transport within an individual NiCo2O4 nanoplate is further investigated. The mechanisms of electrical conduction in the low-temperature range (T < 100 K) can be explained in terms of the Mott's variable-range hopping model. At high temperatures (T > 100 K), both the variable-range hopping and nearest-neighbor hopping mechanisms contribute to the electrical transport properties of the NiCo2O4 nanoplate. These initial results will be useful to understanding the fundamental characteristics of these nanoplates and to designing functional nanodevices from NiCo2O4 nanostructures.