Strain-Mediated Interfacial Dynamics during Au–PbS Core–Shell Nanostructure Formation

Kai-Yang Niu, Miao Liu, Kristin A. Persson, Yu Han, Haimei Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


An understanding of the hierarchical nanostructure formation is of significant importance for the design of advanced functional materials. Here, we report the in situ study of lead sulfide (PbS) growth on gold (Au) nanorod seeds using liquid cell transmission electron microscopy (TEM). By tracking the formation dynamics of Au-PbS core-shell nanoparticles, we found the preferential heterogeneous nucleation of PbS on the ends of a Au nanorod prior to the development of a complete PdS shell. During PbS shell growth, drastic sulfidation of Au nanorod was observed, leading to large volume shrinkage (up to 50%) of the initial Au nanorod seed. We also captured intriguing wavy interfacial behavior, which can be explained by our DFT calculation results that the local strain gradient at the core-shell interface facilitates the mass transport and mediates reversible phase transitions of Au ↔ Au2S during the PbS shell growth. © 2016 American Chemical Society.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6235-6240
Number of pages6
JournalACS Nano
Issue number6
StatePublished - May 26 2016


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