The new Nanomesh material developed by Imec and KU Leuven has a three-dimensional lattice structure (metal) in the nanometer range and is characterized by very regular internal dimensions. Thanks to the combination of its unique material properties and simple manufacture, the researchers believe that the material can be used in many industrial applications, especially when it comes to sustainability. These include, for example, more efficient batteries, better catalysts, fuel cells and hydrogen production.
The Nanomesh material is a 3D structure of nanowires horizontally interconnected on multiple planes with very regular internal spacing and dimensions. As a result, the material is very porous and has an extraordinarily high surface-to-volume ratio. For each micrometer thickness, the available surface area is enlarged 26 times.
In addition, the internal and external dimensions can be matched to virtually any specification, which is why scientists believe the material is suitable for a variety of application requirements.
The exceptionally high surface-to-volume ratio offers enormous advantages. After all, many industrial processes are based on chemical reactions that (must) take place on a surface. The more surface is available, the more reactions can take place simultaneously, and the higher the speed or throughput of the process. An example: electrodes in batteries that convert lithium into lithium ions. The Imec's Nanomesh material could be used to produce high-performance batteries with high capacity and rapid charging.
And last but not least: The material is easy to produce using low-cost anodizing and electroplating processes.