High temperature annealing of gas phase synthesized Mg nanoparticles surrounded by an MgO shell leads to formation of hollow MgO nanoshells due to the evaporation assisted Kirkendall effect. Under electron beam exposure in TEM, the (220) MgO facets reduce their high surface energy by forming cube facets, which is followed by nanoshell size reduction and collapse within a few minutes. However, in ambient conditions the nanoshells remain stable for significant periods of time and further degrade by becoming filled with carbon while lossing any MgO identity. Finally, in moderate low vacuum they remained stable for months indicating promise for applications.
- Kirkendall Effect
- High Resolution TEM (HRTEM)