Controlled ligament coarsening in nanoporous gold by annealing in vacuum versus nitrogen

Ye Sun, Sofie A. Burger, T. John Balk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The structural evolution of nanoporous gold during thermal treatment was studied by annealing samples in vacuum and in flowing nitrogen. As expected, ligament thickness generally increased in both environments. However, ligaments annealed at high temperature in vacuum remained relatively narrow, undergoing much less coarsening than nitrogen-annealed samples, albeit with some ligament agglomeration. When annealed in flowing nitrogen, gold ligaments coarsened significantly at temperatures above 300 °C. This discrepancy is attributed to different surface diffusion rates of gold in the two annealing environments. The current results suggest that diffusion on the surfaces of nanoporous gold ligaments proceeds more quickly in nitrogen than in vacuum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1001-1011
Number of pages11
JournalPhilosophical Magazine
Issue number10
StatePublished - Apr 3 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation [grant number DMR-0847693]. Acknowledgement is made to the Donors of the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund [grant number 43324-G10] for support of this research.


  • annealing
  • diffusion
  • gold
  • nanoporous
  • surface diffusion
  • thermal stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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