An Ambient and Surfactant-less Synthesis of Segmented Palladium/Gold Multi-functional Nanowires
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Segmented noble metal nanowires (NWs) represent an exciting, multifunctional one-dimensional structural architecture with a variety of potential applications. However, currently available methodologies for preparing these systems require either rigorous reaction conditions or expensive equipment. An example of such a conventional protocol is electrodeposition. These strict requirements have limited the potential for these systems to be produced on a large scale, since this protocol is costly and requires complex processes and caustic reaction media. Given the inherent limitations of such methodologies, we report for the first time an ambient, surfactantless template-based approach for the reliable production of Pd/Au segmented nanowires that is not only sustainable but also efficient. Our simple two-step synthetic approach allows for direct and predictable control over the relative segment lengths in these nanomaterials. Moreover, thorough structural characterization of these as-prepared samples confirms that our segmented nanowires maintain high quality, crystalline, elementally pure subunits with a well-defined interface between the constituent metals. In the context of preparing segmented nanowires as multifunctional nanostructures, we demonstrate that these as-prepared nanowires achieve high levels of performance when employed as both electrocatalysts and nanomotors.