Researchers have discovered a new method to create encapsulated carbon nanomaterials that contain fluorine. Known as fullerenes, these nanocages are promising candidates for clean energy applications.
Water samples collected from the heart of Africa contain clues about carbon cycling worldwide.
Molecular fossils of chlorophyll (called porphyrins) more than 1.1 billion years old find suggest that photosynthesis began 600 million years earlier than previously established.
Using tools at the MagLab, scientists pinpoint pigments that are the oldest on record.
Martha Chacón-Patiño to jump-start collaboration that could advance both the treatment of cancer and the study of petroleum.
ICR technology helps identify new kinds of hemoglobin abnormalities.
With determination, confidence and a top-notch team, this MagLab chemist exposed the complex secrets of crude oil, busting open a vast, new field.
Members of a sprawling science team piece together the puzzle of biochar, a promising tool in the fight against global warming.
Paul Dunk, a chemist in the MagLab's Ion Cyclotron Resonance Facility, has published a paper on so-called "nanocages" formed by combining graphite, a two-dimensional form of carbon, with different metals. The research, Transformation of doped graphite into cluster-encapsulated fullerene cages, appeared this week in Nature Communications.
For the research, Dunk and his collaborators created metallofullerenes, molecules that consist of a ball-like carbon structure that encompasses several atoms inside of it — hence the term "nanocage."
Dunk and his colleagues tested theories of how these compounds form by looking for hypothesized intermediate molecules between the original reactants and end products. They demonstrated that, unlike what many scientists believed, the cages do not shrink from or break off of larger globs of carbon, but rather nucleate around the metal, carbon atom by carbon atom.
The findings could help in the future development of nanocage-related technologies ranging from new light-based electronics to molecular electronics.
Dunk's research was done in collaboration with scientists at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Spain and the University of Texas at El Paso.
Read more about this research in the MagLab's fields magazine.
Image of nanocages by Paul Dunk/Caroline McNiel.
From nanorockets to nanocages, good science can come in tiny packages — all with the aim of solving really big problems.