Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Size Dependence of a Temperature-Induced Solid-Solid Phase Transition in Copper(I) Sulfide
- Author(s): Rivest, Jessy B
- et al.
Determination of the phase diagrams for the nanocrystalline forms of materials is crucial for our understanding of nanostructures and the design of functional materials using nanoscale building blocks. The ability to study such transformations in nanomaterials with controlled shape offers further insight into transition mechanisms and the influence of particular facets. Here we present an investigation of the size-dependent, temperature-induced solid-solid phase transition in copper sulfide nanorods from low- to high-chalcocite. We find the transition temperature to be substantially reduced, with the high chalcocite phase appearing in the smallest nanocrystals at temperatures so low that they are typical of photovoltaic operation. Size dependence in phase trans- formations suggests the possibility of accessing morphologies that are not found in bulk solids at ambient conditions. These other- wise-inaccessible crystal phases could enable higher-performing materials in a range of applications, including sensing, switching, lighting, and photovoltaics.