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October 15, 2014

VIP: Non-Invasive Probing of Nanoparticle Electrostatics

Dr. Kristina Tschulik, Dr. Wei Cheng, Dr. Christopher Batchelor-McAuley, Stuart Murphy, Dr. Dario Omanović and Prof. Dr. Richard G. Compton

Non-Invasive Probing of Nanoparticle ElectrostaticsNot what you might think: A new and non-invasive technique to probe the electrostatic interaction between surface-charged nanoparticles and a charged metal/solution interface shows that electrostatic effects are insignificant in all but very dilute electrolytes.

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  1. Comparison of Anodic TiO2-Nanotube Membranes used for Frontside-Illuminated Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

    Fatemeh Mohammadpour, Prof. Mahmood Moradi, Gihoon Cha, Seulgi So, Dr. Kiyoung Lee, Dr. Marco Altomare and Prof. Dr. Patrik Schmuki

    Article first published online: 21 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/celc.201402368

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    We have lift-off! Frontside-illuminated dye-sensitized solar cells are fabricated from TiO2 nanotube array membranes. Different TiO2-nanotube lift-off strategies are explored to fabricate tube membranes. An optimized potential step approach leads to membranes with complete bottom opening. This configuration markedly increases the efficiency of the solar cell.

  2. Polymeric p–n Nanojunctions: Formation and Electrochemical Properties of C60-Pd@Polypyrrole Core–Shell Nanoparticles

    Ewa Brancewicz, Dr. Emilia Grądzka, Dr. Agnieszka Z. Wilczewska and Prof. Krzysztof Winkler

    Article first published online: 21 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/celc.201402298

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    Turn right at the nanojunction: Spherical nanoparticles coated with a shell of polypyrrole represent spherical p–n nanojunctions. The size of both components, which can be controlled by the polymerization time, influences the electrochemical properties of the material. Polypyrrole is oxidized at positive potentials. The reduction and charge-transfer processes in a negative potential range, which involve the C60-Pd core, are affected by the size of the outer shell of polypyrrole. Such materials can be used as a model system in a new type of hybrid solar cell.

  3. Accelerated Life Testing of Double-Layer Capacitors: Reliability and Safety under Excess Voltage and Temperature

    Prof. Dr. Peter Kurzweil, Andreas Hildebrand and Matthias Weiß

    Article first published online: 20 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/celc.201402302

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    Life in the fast lane: Commercial 50 F double-layer capacitors are tested with respect to fire protection and safety hazards in pulse–power applications at temperatures of up to 120 °C and voltages up to 4 V. Novel diagnostic criteria allow the evaluation of the destruction of the electrode materials, the evaporation of electrolyte, parasitic side reactions, internal pressure, and the formation of decomposition products within the capacitor.

  4. Freestanding Sulfur/3D Carbon Fiber Membrane Cathodes for Advanced Lithium–Sulfur Batteries

    Wei Chen, Prof. Zhian Zhang, Qiang Li, Prof. Yanqing Lai and Prof. Jie Li

    Article first published online: 20 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/celc.201402316

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    High in fiber: A freestanding porous membrane of nitrogen-doped carbon-sphere-coated 3D carbon fibers (NC@FCF) is designed and prepared through the carbonization of modified filter paper, on the surface of which polydopamine spheres are deposited. After infiltration with sulfur, the obtained S-NC@FCF membrane is directly used in lithium–sulfur batteries as a cathode, exhibiting excellent electrochemical performance.

  5. p-Element-Doped Graphene: Heteroatoms for Electrochemical Enhancement

    Hwee Ling Poh and Prof. Martin Pumera

    Article first published online: 20 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/celc.201402307

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    Process matters: Doping of graphene with heteroatoms, namely boron, nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur, fluorine, chlorine, bromine, and iodine, changes its electrochemical properties. Here, the different routes currently available for doping are discussed, and the influence upon the electrochemical properties of such materials is shown.