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Superfluid to Mott Insulator Quantum Phase Transition in a Permanent Magnetic Lattice

Dr Dario Buso

Centre for Micro-Photonics,
Swinburne University of Technology

Friday 7 March 2008, 3:30 pm, EN101 (Ground Floor, EN Building), Hawthorn.

The work presented is focused on the application of the Sol-Gel technique in the realization of thin inorganic layers containing metal and semiconductor nanoparticles capable of reversibly detecting gas phase analytes. Three synthetic approaches were adopted, each of them characterized by a systematic increase of the final materials morphology, structure and micro-structure control.
In the first approach, named In-situ synthesis, the nanoparticles growth has been promoted during formation of the porous matrix through controlled annealing. The second approach, named Ex-situ synthesis, comprised of the separate synthesis of the nanoparticles and subsequent insertion inside the porous support. The third protocol consisted in creating monolayers of nanoparticles on the surface of a substrate, followed by coating with the desired sol-gel matrix.
The layers have then been tested as gas sensors exploiting different interfaces: optical, conductometric and surface acoustic wave. In all cases a reversible detection of the target gaseous species has been observed, and it has been possible to correlate the materials structure / micro-structure to the respective gas sensing performance. The materials engineering was essential in order for nanocomposites with the desired optical and chemical properties applicable to gas sensing devices to be obtained.

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