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Electrochemical Control of Material Shapes


Kyoung-Shin Choi
Purdue University Associate Professor Analytical-Inorganic Chemistry

When Dr. Kyoung-Shin Choi talks about her work, her excitement is palpable. She likens her research to exploring a new frontier. “There are numerous materials and systems that we can improve using our methods and understanding,” she says. “Basically, we’ll never get bored.” She and a team of eight graduate students and two postdoctoral researchers are investigating electrochemical control of material morphology. Essentially, they want to elucidate how the shape of inorganic materials on a nano and micro scale affects the materials’ properties and, based on this knowledge, how to create optimum shapes that will bring about highly desired behavior.

Choi uses electrodeposition as her primary means of shape control, an idea that was conceived during her postdoctoral work years ago. Electrodeposition is a process by which desired materials are grown on a conductive substrate immersed in solution. Applying a specific amount of current triggers oxidation or reduction of ions. The benefit of this procedure is the exceptional level of control that can be exerted over the material’s growth.

Source: ASC PRF Annual Report on Research