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Functionalizing molecular nanocarbon with fluorine atoms

Published November 19, 2018

Up to two fluorine atoms are added to the Sc3N@C80 fullerene cage, as shown in this FT-ICR mass spectrum
Up to two fluorine atoms are added to the Sc3N@C80 fullerene cage, as shown in this FT-ICR mass spectrum

Paul Dunk, National MagLab, and Antonio Rodriguez-Fortea, University of Rovira i Virgili.

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.

What did scientists discover?

Researchers found a way to add fluorine to high-impact carbon nanomaterials, which could chemically tune them for possible use in clean energy applications such as plastic solar cells.

Why is this important?

All prior attempts to add fluorine to the nanomaterial, Sc3N@C80, led to destruction of the carbon cage. In this work, scientists used laser vaporization to generate the first fluorinated and metal-encapsulated carbon nanocages, a long-standing challenge in the pursuit and design of new carbon nanomaterials.

Who did the research?

Antonio Moreno-Vicente1, Marc Mulet-Gas2, Paul W. Dunk2, Josep M. Poblet1, Antonio Rodríguez-Fortea1

1University of Rovira i Virgili, Spain; 2National MagLab, Florida State University

Why did they need the MagLab?

The discovery and formation of the these chemical compounds requires unique, laser-based instrumentation coupled to analysis by high-magnetic-field FT-ICR mass spectrometry, an exclusive combination of state-of-the-art instrumentation found only in the MagLab’s Ion Cyclotron Resonance Facility.

Details for scientists


This research was funded by the following grants: G.S. Boebinger (NSF DMR-1157490, NSF DMR-1644779); A. Rodríguez-Fortea, J.M.Poblet (MCICTQ2014-52774-P, GC 2014SGR, and XRQTC)

For more information, contact Chris Hendrickson.

Tools They Used

This research was conducted in the 9.4 Tesla FT-ICR MS (155 mm bore diameter) at the MagLab's ICR Facility.

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Last modified on 26 December 2022