Regina Ciancio is responsible of Scanning Electron Microscopy Laboratory at CNR-IOM and of users training on the use of electron microscopes, as well as of the technological activities in support of commercial services for industrial users.
Her research activity is focused on the nanostructural characterization by High Resolution Transmission Electron Microscopy (HRTEM), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and High resolution X-ray Diffraction (XRD) of nanostructured materials with a special emphasis on oxide thin films and heterostructures.
Distinct behavior of localized and delocalized carriers in anatase TiO2 (001) during reaction with O2
C. Bigi, Z. Tang, G.M. Pierantozzi, P. Orgiani, P. K. Das, J. Fujii, I. Vobornik, T. Pincelli, A. Troglia, T.-L. Lee, R. Ciancio, G. Drazic, A. Verdini, A. Regoutz, P.D.C. King, D. Biswas, G. Rossi, G. Panaccione, and A. Selloni
Two-dimensional (2D) metallic states induced by oxygen vacancies (VOs) at oxide surfaces and interfaces provide opportunities for the development of advanced applications, but the ability to control the behavior of these states is still limited. We used angle resolved photoelectron spectroscopy combined with density-functional theory (DFT) to study the reactivity of VO-induced states at the (001) surface of anatase TiO2, where both 2D metallic and deeper lying in-gap states (IGs) are observed. The 2D and IG states exhibit remarkably different evolutions when the surface is exposed to molecular O2: while IGs are almost completely quenched, the metallic states are only weakly affected. DFT calculations indeed show that the IGs originate from surface VOs and remain localized at the surface, where they can promptly react with O2. In contrast, the metallic states originate from subsurface vacancies whose migration to the surface for recombination with O2 is kinetically hindered on anatase TiO2 (001), thus making them much less sensitive to oxygen dosing.
From our users
Thin Solid Films, 674, 12-21, (2019)
Control of composition and grain growth in Cu2ZnSnS4 thin films from nanoparticle inks
N. Ataollahi, C. Malerba, E. Cappelletto, R. Ciancio, R. Edla, R. Di Maggio, P. Scardi
Cu2ZnSnS4 (CZTS) nanocrystals (NCs) were produced via hot-injection from metal chloride precursors. A systematic investigation of the influence of synthesis conditions on composition, size and microstructure of CZTS NCs is presented. The results show that the solvent amount (oleylamine) is a key parameter in the synthesis of this quaternary chalcogenide: a low solvent content leads to CZTS NCs with a prominent kesterite phase with the desired composition for use as absorber material in thin film photovoltaic cells. It is also observed that lowering the injection temperature (250 °C) favours formation of CZTS NCs in the wurtzite phase. The effect of different high temperature thermal treatments on the grain growth is also shown: large crystals are obtained with annealing in inert atmosphere, whereas nanocrystalline films are obtained introducing sulphur vapour during the heat treatment. A correlation between the grain dimension and the carbonaceous residues in the final films is investigated. It is shown that the grain growth is hindered by organic residues, amount and nature of which depend on the heat treatment atmosphere. In fact, oleylamine is removed by a complex pyrolytic process, which is affected by the presence of sulphur vapour. The latter favours the stability of oleylamine residuals against its non-oxidative release.
Microscopie, 29, 61-67, (2018)
A combined in operando approach for low-energy Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy and Grazing Incident Small Angle X-ray Scattering
S. Dal Zilio, M. Salleras, L. Balcells, J. Esteve, R. Edla, A. Young, C.-K. Tsung, P. Scardi, R. Rashidi, G. Cautero, B. Marmiroli, H. Amenitsch, R. Ciancio
Probing the evolution of electronic, structural, and chemical properties of nanostructured materials under reaction conditions is a crucial issue to determine their structure-functionality relationships. A relevant example is represented by heterogeneous catalysts, whose properties change dramatically with respect to the environment. Much of effort has been made lately in designing new solutions and technologies, or modifying the existing ones for purpose of operando conditions analysis. The use of micro- or nanoreactors, is a second approach, where ultrathin membranes can efficiently separate the high-pressure volume from the (ultra)high vacuum of the characterization chamber. Very recently, microreactor cells have been developed to integrate the capabilities of ensemble-averaging synchrotron techniques with local probe ones, as TEM to analyze the same catalytic process with different instruments. Despite the great power of this method, the extremely small probing size of TEMs restricts the application of a combined approach to a limited set of micro-focused synchrotron techniques. We propose here the development of a novel multifunctional microreactor for operando low voltage Scanning TEM in a SEM compatible with a broad range of synchrotron techniques. We successfully designed a device compatible with Grazing Incident Small Angle X-ray Scattering (GISAXS), demonstrating the feasibility of our approach by studying the shape and size evolution of PVP-capped Pd nanocrystals under oxidation/reaction conditions.
Strada Statale 14 - km 163,5 - 34149 Trieste, ITALY
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NFFA is a Progetto Internazionale financed by MIUR through CNR
(Istituto Officina dei Materiali, Trieste) and Elettra-Sincrotrone Trieste
and managed by the Commissione NFFA chaired by Giorgio Rossi
(Università di Milano and IOM-CNR).