Nature provides numerous fascinating materials with a manifold of astonishing properties. The task of a material scientist is to fathom these properties, understand their origins and tailor them for a specific application. Additionally, universal structure-property correlations can be derived from naturally occuring materials from which the invention of bio-inspired, artificial materials with perfectly tailored properties may benefit. "Mesocrystals" are an especially interesting class of materials, like Calcit in egg shells, mussels or corals as well as the toth and bone component Hydroxylapatit. These biominerals consist of a complex, macroscopic network of nanocrystals which are highly ordered and by obtaining such a uniform orientation form a so called mesocrystal. The properties of such a mineral are fundamentally different from the single nanocrystals and depend directly on the specific structure and orientation of the components.
The aim of this project is the synthesis of artificial mesocrystals with defined structure and orientation, which are additionally electrical conductive. To achieve this target we use customized nanocrystals of different shape and size, which are subsequently linked chemically with conductive, organic molecules. By applying modern X-ray diffraction methods and electron microscopy the structure of the as synthesized mesocrystals will be uncovered and correlations between the resulting structure and type of nanocrystals/molecules will be revealed.
These novel properties of the prepared, electrical conductive mesocrystals could find usage in the optoelectronic applications like light-emitting diodes, photodetectors and solar cells. Especially useful herein are direction dependent transport properties which are given by the unique structure and are only hardly achievable in classical optoelectronic materials.
October 2015 - September 2017
Carl Zeiss-Stiftung, Nachwuchsförderprogramm für Postdocs