Dr. Susan LatturnerProfessor
Ph.D. (2000) University of California at Santa Barbara
Research InterestSOLID STATE CHEMISTRY; FLUX GROWTH OF NEW INORGANIC MATERIALS
Research in our lab is focused on the synthesis of new inorganic materials using molten fluxes as reaction media. Growth of magnetic phases, semiconductors, and hydrogen storage alloys is of particular interest. A variety of synthetic techniques are used (such as solid state synthesis, hydrothermal synthesis, and growth from fluxes) and several characterization methods are employed (crystallography, solid state NMR, magnetic and optical measurements) to explore the structure and properties of the products.
GROWTH OF INTERMETALLICS IN METAL FLUXES
Reactions in metal fluxes are carried out to grow large crystals of semiconductors and intermetallic compounds. For some fluxes, the solvent metal is incorporated into the product. We have synthesized many complex magnetic materials from fluxes comprised of a lanthanide element (such as La, Ce, Nd) combined with a transition metal (Fe, Co, Ni). These include La21Fe8Sn7C12 (which contains tetrahedra of iron atoms exhibiting spin frustration) and Nd6Co5AlxGe4-x (which contains layers of cobalt atoms which order ferromagnetically).
Alkaline earth-rich fluxes make use of highly reactive metals such as Ca and Mg. Reactions in Ca/Li flux mixtures have yielded a number of new phases such as complex carbide Ca11Sn3C8 which contains two different carbide anions, and complex metal hydrides such as Ca54In13H27 which may be of interest for hydrogen storage. Magnesium-based fluxes have proved to be excellent synthesis media for semiconducting silicides with possible thermoelectric applications.
SYNTHESIS OF METAL SULFIDES IN SULFUR FLUX
Metal sulfides are of interest as potential photovoltaic materials and catalysts. We have found that sulfur/halogen mixtures (such as S/I2 melts) can be used to grow complex sulfides in the form of large crystals. This allows us to investigate the optical properties and stability of metastable phases such as Bi19I3S27.
|Zhou, S.; Latturner, S. E. "Nd8Co4-xAlxGe2C3: A case study in flux growth of lanthanide-rich intermetallics." J. Solid State Chem., 2016, in press.|
|Silsby, K.; Sui, F.; Ma, X.; Kauzlarich, S. M.; Latturner, S. E. "Thermoelectric properties of Ba1.9Ca2.4Mg9.7Si7: A new Zintl phase with the Zr2Fe12P7 structure type." Chem. Mater., 2015, 27, p. 6708-6716.|
|Ma, X.; Chai, P.; Chen, B.; Lochner, E.; Latturner, S. E. "RFe2MgxAl8-x (R = La-Nd and Sm; x = 0.8): Flux synthesis, structure, magnetic and electrical properties." J. Solid State Chem., 2015, 229, p. 181-187.|
|Blankenship, T.V.; Dickman, M.J.; van de Burgt, L.; Latturner, S. E. "Ca12InC13-x and Ba12InC18H4: Alkaline earth indium allenylides synthesized in AE/Li flux (AE = Ca, Ba)." Inorg. Chem., 2015, 54, p. 914-921.|
|Zhou, S.; Mishra, T.; Wang, M.; Shatruk, M.; Cao, H.; Latturner, S. E. "Synthesis, crystal structure, and magnetic properties of novel intermetallic compounds R2Co2SiC (R = Pr, Nd)." Inorg. Chem., 2014, 53, p. 6141-6148.|
|Blankenship, T.V.; Chen, B.; Latturner, S. E. "Ca54In13B(4-x)H(23+x): A complex metal subhydride featuring ionic and metallic regions." Chem. Mater., 2014, 26, p. 3202-3208.|