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Synthesis Process Time of Functional Complex Oxides Reduced 30-fold

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admin kaeri
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Date :
2017.08.30

Synthesis Process Time of Functional Complex Oxides Reduced 30-fold

 

- New process technology developed to significantly improve the synthesis process of functional complex oxides (Published in Scientific Reports, a sister journal of Nature) -

 

A Korean research team has independently developed technology to reduce the time required to synthesize functional complex oxides by 30-fold compared to the conventional process. On July 13, the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (President Jaejoo Ha) announced that its research team in the advanced materials development team successfully developed a new process technology to synthesize functional complex oxides at an unprecedented speed. Functional complex oxides refer to compounds designed to feature specific electric and magnetic functions such as a piezoelectric effect, superconductivity, and ferromagnetism. They are used in a wide array of areas as core materials for electronic parts and devices, including sensors, transducers, catalysts, and fuel cells.

Complex oxide: Chemical compound that contains oxygen and at least two other elements. 

Piezoelectric effect: The ability to generate an electric charge in response to applied mechanical stress,

    or generate stress when an electric field is applied.

Superconductivity: Phenomenon of exactly zero electrical resistance.

Ferromagnetism: Mechanism by which certain materials form permanent magnets, or are attracted to magnets.

 

The conventional synthesis process for complex oxides consists of a complicated series of mixing and grinding raw material, heat treatment, molding, and re-heat treatment. In particular, the stage of raw material mixing and heat treatment requires processing of at least 30 hours and precise heat treatment at 850 or at a higher temperature. Such conditions inevitably make the synthesis process highly complicated, resulting in low reproducibility and productivity. Against this backdrop, the research team in the advanced materials development team developed high energy direct mechanochemical synthesis technology of complex oxides using a mechanochemical reaction upon mixing by tripling the energy created when the raw material is mixed or ground. As a result, the researchers stably synthesized final oxides within 1 hour at room temperature without additional heat treatment.

 

Senior researcher Jin-Ju Park in the research team explained, “The core elements of reducing the processing time and improving the reproducibility include the design of the rotation rate in consideration of the revolution and rotation rates, a mechanical balance to realize high centrifugal acceleration, and the application of efficient water cooling technology.”

“This technology has sufficient potential for commercialization,” noted senior researcher Min-Ku Lee of the team. He also added that mass production with high efficiency will help contribute to vitalizing the part and material industries in Korea with regard to functional complex oxides, which are an essential factor for the state-of-the-art technology industry. The research results were published in the April online issue of Scientific Reports (sister journal of Nature), the globally renowned academic journal of multidisciplinary science.

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