Algae Extracts Controllable Synthesis of Vanadium Carbide Nanosheets with Enhanced Photothermal Performance in the Near Infrared Region

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What is Vanadium Carbide?

Vanadium Carbideis an opaque black crystal that has a density between 5.25 and 5.54g/cm3 with a melting point around 2750. This is slightly harder then quartz. This substance can be used to make vanadium steel, and it is also used as a carbide cemented carburide additive.

The Discovery of Two Dimensional Vanadium-Carbide Nanosheets

Vanadium-carbide nanosheets with a two-dimensional structure have great potential to be used as photothermal agents in the treatment of cancer. The application of vanadium in photothermal therapies is limited by harsh synthesis and low photothermal efficiency. The research team recently reported a green intercalation method that uses algae extracts for high-yielding two-dimensional vanadium-carbide nanosheets.

Recent years, two-dimensional transitional metal carbonitride has been used in a variety of fields, including energy storage, biosensors, biomedicine, and many others, because it is superior for metal conductivity. Its hydrophobicity and various components, as well, have made them useful. Broad application prospects.

Preparation and Characterization of Two-dimensional Transition Metal compounds

The Mn+1AXn structure is the precursor for the preparation of two-dimensional carbonitride. In this ternary, “M” represents the transition metal and “A”, mainly, the IIIA group or IVA Group (13 or 14,) element. “X” can be C or N. MAX is a layered hexagonal structure composed of metal MX and A bonds. The A element “bonds” between adjacent layers Mn+1Xn. Due to the M-A bonds being weaker than M-X bonds, it is possible to selectively etch the A layer with a strong acid or alkali in order for a Mn+1Xn single layer. The harsh conditions of these methods, the low yield and the damage to the structure of Mn+1Xn on a single layer limit their use at large scale. It is therefore urgent to develop a method that is efficient, environmental friendly and yields high to understand such materials better and to broaden their applications.

The Future of Vanadium-Carbide Nanosheets

The team of researchers proposed a method to solve the above problems by using algae extracts in order to produce high-yielding two-dimensional nanosheets vanadium carbide by intercalation. The vanadium carbonitride nanosheets produced by this method are complete and have high absorption at near-infrared wavelengths. The photothermal convertibility at 808nm is up to 48 percent, which is superior to other two-dimensional transitional metal carbonitride materials such as Mo2C (42.9%) and Nb2C(36.4% NIR-I and 45.65% in NIR-2), as well as Ta4C3 (44.7%). This efficiency is comparable to that of gold-based material and carbon-based Nanomaterials. Both in vitro and in vivo tests show that the two-dimensional vanadium-carbide nanosheets could be used for photothermal treatment of cancer guided by photoacoustic or magnetic resonance multimode imaging. This work eliminates the harsh conditions associated with the use of strong corrosive alkalis or acids, while providing an economic, environmentally-friendly, high-yield and high-yield way to prepare two dimensional transition metal carbitrides.

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