One of the major barriers towards the successful introduction of nanoparticles (NP) into many applications is the lack of a tight control on their properties ((size, shape, crystallinity, composition, core-shell, functionalization, etc). This can only be resolved by the simultaneous use of several metrology methods, to extract the relevant information in real-time and to establish of a feedback control loop. In this project we take the first steps towards this goal by proposing the required concepts and methods.
The main goal of this project is therefore to develop real-time characterization metrology tools to measure the properties of nanoparticles, functionalized NPs and NP thin films. To enable a real-time and a complete characterization of NP properties we drastically extend the capabilities of Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS), Zeta Potential (ZP) and Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) and combine those into an integrated real-time NPs measurement platform.
New methods to measure the flux of NPs in the gas phase and the properties of NP thin films and heterostructures will be developed based on ultraviolet and vacuum ultraviolet radiation. These will be combined with Grazing Incidence SAXS and Reflection High Energy Electron Diffraction into a real-time NP thin film measurement platform.
Standard operating procedures will be developed for these instrument combinations so that a multi-method metrology standard can be defined based on the (quasi-) simultaneous measurement of complimentary properties with the different tools.
Finally, the capabilities of these integrated measurement platforms will be tested against two high throughput lines for the production of NP in solution and for the growth of NP thin films.
This project will be carried out by four Small and Medium Enterprises -- all active in equipment and metrology development -- two Industrial partners and two institutes for Higher and Secondary Education.
Call for proposal
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