Younan Xia is the Brock Family Chair and Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He received a B.S. degree from the University of Science and Technology of China in 1987, a M.S. degree from University of Pennsylvania in 1993, and a Ph.D. degree from Harvard University (with George M. Whitesides) in 1996. In addition to methodology development and mechanistic understanding, he invented a myriad of nanomaterials with controlled properties for applications related to plasmonics, electronics, photonics, photovoltaics, display, catalysis, energy conversion, nanomedicine, and regenerative medicine. As a notable example, the silver nanowires invented by him have been commercialized by many companies for the production of cost-effective and high-performance touchscreen interfaces and flexible electrodes. The gold nanocages invented by him are advancing cancer theranostics, including early diagnosis, controlled release, and photothermal treatment. Xia has co-authored over 820 peer-reviewed publications, together with a total citation of more than 170,000 and an H-index of 206. He has been named a Top 10 Chemist and Materials Scientist in the world. He has received a number of prestigious awards, including Materials Research Society (MRS) Metal (2017), American Chemical Society (ACS) National Award in the Chemistry of Materials (2013), NIH Director's Pioneer Award (2006), David and Lucile Packard Fellow in Science and Engineering (2000), NSF CAREER Award (2000). More information can be found at http://www.nanocages.com.
Putting Gold Nanocages to Work for Biomedical and Energy Applications
Gold nanocages (AuNCs) are a class of hollow nanocrystals with ultrathin and porous walls made of Au or Au-based alloys. When interacting with light, AuNCs exhibit a large absorption cross section and a high efficiency for light-to-heat conversion, making them effective photothermal transducers. Significantly, their absorption peak can be easily and precisely tuned through the visible and near-infrared regions to optimize their interaction with light of different wavelengths. In this talk, I will discuss recent progress in controlling the synthesis of AuNCs, together with their use in applications involving photothermal conversion. I will focus on the strategies developed for tuning their size, shape, composition, as well as the thickness and porosity of the walls. I will then discuss the photothermal properties of AuNCs in terms of both theoretical calculation and experimental measurement, followed by a number of examples to highlight their applications in the context of light detection, water evaporation, phase transition, controlled release, and photothermal therapy. At the end, I will offer some perspectives on the challenges and opportunities with respect to both the synthesis and application of AuNCs.