Formation mechanism of novel two-dimensional single crystalline dendritic copper plates in an aqueous environment

Xiaoxue Xu, Hong Yang*, Yinong Liu, Yufeng Zheng, Li Li, Yuan Ji, Xiaodong Han

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper reports on the creation of a unique form of single crystalline two-dimensional (2-D) copper microdendritic plates and proposes a new crystal growth mechanism in an aqueous environment. The crystals are formed via reduction of CuSO4 with starch in aqueous solution. The 2-D crystals are typically ∼300 nm thick and ∼50 μm wide, and consist of rhombic petals of (1 1 1) planar orientation. The plates are found to nucleate at the centre in polyhedral shapes and grow outwards along zigzag growth paths along the 〈112̄〉 directions. Formation of such a crystal morphology is attributed to three different growth controlling criteria. The formation of polyhedral crystalline nuclei is controlled by the Gibbs-Wulff theorem, driven by the need to minimize the total surface energy for nucleation; growth of the crystal to form a 2-D rosette morphology is controlled by the planar expansion kinetics of low surface energy crystallographic planes; the zigzag dendritic growth pattern is dictated by the Cu2+ concentration gradient at the crystal growth fronts in the solution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7177-7188
Number of pages12
JournalActa Materialia
Volume59
Issue number19
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Copper
  • Crystal growth
  • Dendrite formation
  • Hydrothermal synthesis
  • Two-dimensional plates

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