Liquid metals from creating two dimensional materials to CO2 capture

Kalantar-zadeh, Kourosh1*; Daeneke, Torben2|
School of Chemical Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
2School of Engineering, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

Keywords: Liquid metal, greenhouse gas, greenhouse, two dimensional

Liquid metals and their alloys are extraordinary materials with rich physics and chemistries. Yet our knowledge about them is inadequate and their usage has largely remained limited to centuries-old conventional applications. This talk presents the novel concepts that liquid metals can offer and present our group’s efforts for the unification the scattered works on liquid metals that have emerged in recent years. Here liquid metals are explored as solvents for reintroducing their unique chemistry and their skins are investigated as reaction media to create new atomically thin materials.

Fundamental observations are pursued to harness the power of electron-rich liquid metallic environments and control the skin properties to create surface compounds depending on the materials in the metallic core. The findings are used for creating two dimensional materials with functional applications. The progress of the work on liquid metals will be presented that ranges from applications in microfluidics to incorporating liquid metals as reaction media for the synthesis of low dimensional metal compounds.

In addition, liquid metals will also be shown to play an important role in closing the carbon emission loop. Herein, the incorporation of liquid metal electrocatalyst that contains metallic elemental cerium nanoparticles will be discussed. The electrochemical reduction of CO2 to layered solid carbonaceous species, at a low onset potential of −310 mV vs CO2/C at room temperature will be shown. Due to the inhibition of van der Waals adhesion at the liquid interface, the liquid metal electrode was remarkably resistant to deactivation via coking caused by solid carbonaceous species. This is the very unique feature of this conversion.