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Advanced Materials

Nanoporous Gold Leaf: “Ancient Technology”/Advanced Material


  • We thank Dr. Mingwei Chen for TEM assistance, and Anant Mathur for useful discussions. This work is supported by the NSF under grants DMR-0092756, DMR-0080031, and CTS-0304062.


A free-standing nanoporous gold (NPG) membrane is made by dealloying commercially available white-gold leaf in nitric acid (see Figure). This porous material has an unusual combination of characteristics in that it is metallic with a continuous crystal lattice throughout the porous network, and has a pore size that is adjustable via simple room-temperature post-processing. This ultra-high-surface-area material is potentially very useful for applications such as electrocatalysis and sensing.

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