Advanced Functional Materials, Vol.22, No.4, 675-694, 2012
Hierarchical Nanocomposites Derived from Nanocarbons and Layered Double Hydroxides - Properties, Synthesis, and Applications
The combination of one-dimensional and two-dimensional building blocks leads to the formation of hierarchical composites that can take full advantages of each kind of material, which is an effective way for the preparation of multifunctional materials with extraordinary properties. Among various building blocks, nanocarbons (e.g., carbon nanotubes and graphene) and layered double hydroxides (LDHs) are two of the most powerful materials that have been widely used in human life. This Feature Article presents a state-of-the-art review of hierarchical nanocomposites derived from nanocarbons and LDHs. The properties of nanocarbons, LDHs, as well as the combined nanocomposites, are described first. Then, efficient and effective fabrication methods for the hierarchical nanocomposites, including the reassembly of nanocarbons and LDHs, formation of LDHs on nanocarbons, and formation of nanocarbons on LDHs, are presented. The as-obtained nanocomposites derived form nanocarbons and LDHs exhibited excellent performance as multifunctional materials for their promising applications in energy storage, nanocomposites, catalysis, environmental protection, and drug delivery. The fabrication of LDH/carbon nanocomposites provides a novel method for the development of novel multifunctional nanocomposites based on the existing nanomaterials. However, knowledge of their assembly mechanism, robust and precise route for LDH/nanocarbon hybrid with well designed structure, and the relationship between structure, properties, and applications are still inadequate. A multidisciplinary approach from the scope of materials, physics, chemistry, engineering, and other application areas, is highly required for the development of this advanced functional composite materials.