Close

Search

Search Menu
Photonics Media Photonics Buyers' Guide Photonics EDU Photonics Spectra BioPhotonics EuroPhotonics Industrial Photonics Photonics Showcase Photonics ProdSpec Photonics Handbook
More News
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT
2016 Photonics Buyers' Guide Clearance! – Use Coupon Code FC16 to save 60%!
share
Email Facebook Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Comments

Technique Could Broaden Uses of Titanium Dioxide

Photonics.com
Jul 2012
RALEIGH, N.C., July 2, 2012 — A new method that controls the phase of titanium dioxide at room temperature could make the material more efficient in applications such as photovoltaic cells, smart sensors, optical communication technologies, hydrogen production and antimicrobial coatings.

Titanium dioxide is most commonly available in either an anatase or rutile phase. The arrangement of atoms dictates the material’s optical, chemical and electronic properties. As a result, each phase has different features. The anatase phase is suitable for applications such as hydrogen production and can be used as an antibacterial agent, while the rutile phase is ideal for applications including optical communication technologies, smart sensors and photovoltaic cells.

The technique, developed by scientists at North Carolina State University, precisely controls titanium dioxide’s phase at room temperature and stabilizes it so that it will not change during temperature fluctuations.


The new technique allows researchers to control the phase of the titanium dioxide by modifying the structure of the titanium trioxide and sapphire substrate. (Image: NCSU)

“Traditionally, it has been a challenge to stabilize titanium dioxide in the desired phase,” said Dr. Jay Narayan, the Jon C. Fan Distinguished Chair Professor of materials science and engineering at NC State. “The material tends to transform into the anatase phase below 500 degrees Celsius and transform into the rutile phase at temperatures above 500 Celsius.”

In the process, a sapphire substrate with desired crystalline structure is used, and a template layer of titanium trioxide is grown over the substrate; the structure of the titanium trioxide is similar to that of the substrate. Finally, titanium dioxide is grown on top of the titanium trioxide layer.

The structure of titanium dioxide differs from the titanium trioxide layer, so titanium dioxide can be created in any phase simply by altering the structure of the sapphire substrate and titanium trioxide. This works because of a process called domain matching epitaxy, a method in which lattice planes in the template layer line up with the lattice planes of the material being grown on the template.

The team also has demonstrated how the method can be integrated with silicon computer chip substrates, which can be included in electronic devices such as smart sensors.

The research appeared online June 20 in Applied Physics Letters.

For more information, visit: www.ncsu.edu


GLOSSARY
photonics
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
Comments
Terms & Conditions Privacy Policy About Us Contact Us
back to top

Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn YouTube RSS
©2016 Photonics Media
x We deliver – right to your inbox. Subscribe FREE to our newsletters.