Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > A possible recipe for building ''football'' with boron

Schematic structures of several boron S-fullerenes.
Schematic structures of several boron S-fullerenes.

Abstract:
If you look carefully at a football, you will notice that its surface is composed of hexagons and pentagons. Hexagons lie side by side while any pentagon is surrounded by five hexagons. How many corners and edges are there? Football players do not have to know that as long as they do pass and shots right; an architect or structural physicist, however, could readily give the answer.

A possible recipe for building ''football'' with boron

Beijing, China | Posted on November 23rd, 2008

For decades, scientists have tried to build molecular structures as symmetric, stable and useful as the football's spheric frame. A rapid communication published online in the Nov. 3 issue of Physical Review B reported a possible recipe for building a variety of nanoscale "footballs" with boron, an element just next to carbon in the periodic table, as proposed by researchers from the College of Physical Sciences, Graduate University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

According to Prof. SU Gang, principal investigator of the team, it is well-known that carbon can form nanostructures like fullerenes, nanotubes and graphenes. These structures are endowed with amazing physical and chemical properties: heat resistance, superconductivity, lubrication, even potential medicinal use. Fullerene, for example, is the name of a beautiful carbon-cage molecule found in 1985 by UK and US scientists, who won the Nobel prize in chemistry for the discovery in 1996. Composed entirely of carbon atoms, it may take the form of a hollow sphere, ellipsoid, tube or plane. People named spherical fullerenes "buckyballs" after the noted architectural modeler Buckminster Fuller.

"So boron is just one atomic number from carbon, and they show many structural analogies. Thanks to this proximity, we believe it can also be grown into similar structures," Su noted.

Among the many scientists who have made remarkable research attempts in this regard, there is 1976 Nobel laureate Prof. William N. Lipscomb, who predicted the possibility of a molecule with 32 boron atoms and an icosahedral structure resembling a buckyball shape. In 2004, experts with Yale University synthesized the first pure boron single-wall nanotube in the world. By April 2007, Prof. Yakobson and coworkers at Rice University had envisioned the existence and stability of another buckyball, B80, a hollow spheric cage consisting of 60 boron atoms at corner and an additional one in the center of each hexagon to increase the stability. Recent theoretical studies conducted respectively at Yale and Tsinghua brought about the prediction of new boron sheets and nanotubes.

Based on previous studies, Su's group was devoted to revealing a general scheme for building boron fullerenes. They finally worked out a formula that can derive a large family of new-type fullerenes with outstanding stability. According to the paper, the formula takes the form of "B 32+8k", where "k" can be zero or any counting number. That is to say, theoretically, scientists can develop an unlimited number of structures like B32, B40ˇ­ and so on and so forth, well including the one envisioned by Yakobson. The newly predicted boron sheets, researchers analyzed, could be regarded as an extreme case of the scheme where "k" goes infinite. They call the series S-boron fullerenes, since these buckyballs contain basic building blocks that look like snowdrop motifs.

The researchers then studied the stabilities of these boron fullerenes. With intense ab initio calculations, they proposed an electron counting rule as well as an isolated hollow rule to readily explain high stability and electronic bonding property of the novel structures. Analyses showed that the electronic bonding property was also applicable to a number of newly predicted sheets and nanotubes.

The study by Prof. Su and his colleagues, experts believe, has set up a general framework for the construction and property study of novel boron nanostructures. Meanwhile, it might shed light on the possibility of similar structures built with elements other than carbon and boron.

Now, have you come up with the exact number of corners and edges of a football? Anyway, it has 60 corners and 90 edges.

####

About Chinese Academy of Sciences
CAS strives to build itself into a scientific research base at advanced international level, a base for fostering and bringing up advanced S&T talents, and a base for promoting the development of China's high and new technology industries. By 2010, CAS will have about 80 national institutes noted for their powerful capacities in S&T innovation and sustainable development or with distinctive features; thirty of them will become internationally acknowledged, high-level research institutions, and three to five will be world class.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Chinese Academy of Sciences

Add: 52 Sanlihe Rd., Beijing China
Postcode: 100864
Tel: 86 10 68597289
Fax: 86 10 68512458

Chief-Editor's Information:
Guo Haiyan
the Editor
Bulletin of Chinese Academy of Sciences
CAS Institute of Policy & Management,
P.O.Box 8712, Beijing 100080, China.

Copyright © Chinese Academy of Sciences

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Oxford Instruments and Dresden High Magnetic Field Laboratory collaborate to develop HTS magnet technology components for high field superconducting magnet systems June 29th, 2016

Texas A&M Chemist Says Trapped Electrons To Blame For Lack Of Battery Efficiency: Forget mousetraps — today’s scientists will get the cheese if they manage to build a better battery June 28th, 2016

Building a smart cardiac patch: 'Bionic' cardiac patch could one day monitor and respond to cardiac problems June 28th, 2016

New, better way to build circuits for world's first useful quantum computers June 28th, 2016

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes

Nanotubes' 'stuffing' as is: A scientist from the Lomonosov Moscow State University studied the types of carbon nanotubes' 'stuffing' June 2nd, 2016

Programmable materials find strength in molecular repetition May 23rd, 2016

Nanotubes are beacons in cancer-imaging technique: Rice University researchers use spectral triangulation to pinpoint location of tumors May 21st, 2016

Unveiling the electron's motion in a carbon nanocoil: Development of a precise resistivity measurement system for quasi-one-dimensional nanomaterials using a focused ion beam May 16th, 2016

Discoveries

Texas A&M Chemist Says Trapped Electrons To Blame For Lack Of Battery Efficiency: Forget mousetraps — today’s scientists will get the cheese if they manage to build a better battery June 28th, 2016

Building a smart cardiac patch: 'Bionic' cardiac patch could one day monitor and respond to cardiac problems June 28th, 2016

New, better way to build circuits for world's first useful quantum computers June 28th, 2016

Yale researchers’ technology turns wasted heat into power June 27th, 2016

Materials/Metamaterials

Superheroes are real: Ultrasensitive nonlinear metamaterials for data transfer June 25th, 2016

Coexistence of superconductivity and charge density waves observed June 23rd, 2016

GraphExeter illuminates bright new future for flexible lighting devices June 23rd, 2016

Soft decoupling of organic molecules on metal June 23rd, 2016

Announcements

Oxford Instruments and Dresden High Magnetic Field Laboratory collaborate to develop HTS magnet technology components for high field superconducting magnet systems June 29th, 2016

Texas A&M Chemist Says Trapped Electrons To Blame For Lack Of Battery Efficiency: Forget mousetraps — today’s scientists will get the cheese if they manage to build a better battery June 28th, 2016

Building a smart cardiac patch: 'Bionic' cardiac patch could one day monitor and respond to cardiac problems June 28th, 2016

New, better way to build circuits for world's first useful quantum computers June 28th, 2016

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic