CFN Colloquium

"Looking at Silicates Through the Eyes of Surface Science: A Story of Struggle, Incompatibility, Compromise, Hope, ... and Curiosities"

Presented by Dr. J. Anibal Boscoboinik, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Center for Functional Nanomaterials

Thursday, December 12, 2019, 4:00 pm — CFN, Bldg 735, Seminar Room, 2nd Floor

Silicates are the most abundant materials in the earth's crust and are tremendously important in numerous applications. In catalysis, for example, they can be used as supports for active species, or as catalysts themselves in the case of their crystalline nanoporous Al-doped versions (a.k.a.: zeolites). While surface science techniques provide exquisite levels of chemical and electronic detail, this approach struggles with non-conductive materials like silicates due to their incompatibility with methods that require electron conductivity. A way to reach a compromise between the world of silicates and the world of surface science is to use ultra-thin films supported on conductive supports, which gives us hope to truly reach a detailed understanding of these materials. In this talk, I will discuss the work we are doing at the Center for Functional Nanomaterials in trying to understand silicates and zeolites, and I will often diverge into "curiosities" we found along the way. Most notably, confinement effects at the silicate/metal interface have resulted in fascinating properties far beyond our expectations.

Hosted by: Deyu Lu

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