Publications of Pierre Colson
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See detailLong term stability of TiO2 templated multilayer films used as high efficiency photoelectrode in liquid DSSCs
Dewalque, Jennifer ULiege; Nguyen, Ngoc Duy ULiege; Henrist, Catherine ULiege et al

Poster (2013, March)

To our knowledge, the stability results reported in the literature only concern cells made from classical doctor-bladed or screen-printed nanoparticles films. This study focuses on the comparison of the ... [more ▼]

To our knowledge, the stability results reported in the literature only concern cells made from classical doctor-bladed or screen-printed nanoparticles films. This study focuses on the comparison of the long-term stability of these cells with DSSCs working with templated mesoporous films. Indeed, the increased surface area of templated films could lead to a faster degradation of the resulting cells. In accordance with IEC:1646:1996 standard tests, light soaking test at 45°C has been applied to determine the cells stability under prolonged illumination. Moreover, thermal stress in the dark has been applied. Unfortunately, due to the sealing material heat resistance, thermal stress test was only performed at 45°C. [less ▲]

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See detailHierarchical Porous TiO2 thin films by soft and dual templating: A quantitative approach of specific surface and porosity
Henrist, Catherine ULiege; Cloots, Rudi ULiege; Colson, Pierre ULiege et al

Poster (2013, March)

Hierarchical porous structures, with different pore sizes, constitute an important field of research for many applications. However, increasing the pore size results in the decrease of specific surface ... [more ▼]

Hierarchical porous structures, with different pore sizes, constitute an important field of research for many applications. However, increasing the pore size results in the decrease of specific surface. There is a need to quantify and predict the resulting porosity and specific surface. We have prepared hierarchical porous TiO2 thin films either by surfactant templating (soft) or dual surfactant/microspheres templating (soft/hard). They all show narrow, bimodal distribution of pores. Soft templating route leads to very thin films showing high specific surface and bimodal porosity with diameters of 10 nm and 54 nm. Dual templating route combines a Pluronic surfactant-based precursor solution with polystyrene (PS) microspheres (diam. 250 nm) in a one-pot simple process. This gives thicker films with a bimodal distribution of pores (8 nm and 165-200 nm). The dye loading of hierarchical films is compared to pure Pluronic-templated TiO2 films and shows a relative decrease of 29% for Single Templating (ST) and 43% for Dual Templating (DT-250). Finally, a geometrical model is proposed and validated for each system, based on the agreement between calculated specific surfaces and experimental dye loading with N719 dye. [less ▲]

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See detailMorphological and opto-electrical properties of solution deposited Platinum counter electrode for low cost dye sensitized solar cells
Thalluri, Venkata Visveswara Gopala Kris ULiege; Décultot, Marc ULiege; Henrist, Catherine ULiege et al

in Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics [=PCCP] (2013), 15

Although Platinum (Pt) is a rare and very expensive material, Pt counter electrodes are still very commonly used for reaching high efficiencies in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs). The use of alternative ... [more ▼]

Although Platinum (Pt) is a rare and very expensive material, Pt counter electrodes are still very commonly used for reaching high efficiencies in dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs). The use of alternative cheaper catalyst materials did not yet yield to equivalent efficiencies. In this work, we tried to understand how to reduce the amount of deposited Pt-material and simultaneously to deliver higher DSC performances. We systematically compared the properties of Pt-counter electrodes prepared by simple solution deposition methods such as spray-coating, dip-coating, brushing with reference to the Pt-electrodes prepared by sputtering onto fluorine doped-tin oxides (FTOs). The morphological and structural characterizations of the deposited Pt-layers were performed by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The composition of Pt-material was quantified by using SEM electron dispersive x-ray (EDX) mapping measurements are further compared with optical transmission measurements. Also contact angle and sheet resistance measurements were performed. By taking Pt-layers composition, morphology and structural factors into account 9.16% efficient N3 dye based DSCs were assembled. The DSCs were subjected to various opto-electrical characterization techniques like current-voltage (I-V), external quantum efficiency (EQE), cyclic voltammetry (CV), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and transient photo voltage (TPV) measurements. The obtained experimental data suggest that the Pt counter electrodes prepared by solution deposition methods can also reach to high DSC device performances with a consumption of very less amount of Pt material compared with sputtered Pt-layers. This process also proves that higher DSC performances are not limited to the usage of sputtered Pt-layer as counter electrode. [less ▲]

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See detailNanosphere Lithography and Hydrothermal Growth : How to Increase Surface Area and Control Reversible Wetting Properties of ZnO Nanowire Arrays ?
Colson, Pierre ULiege; Schrijnemakers, Audrey ULiege; Vertruyen, Bénédicte ULiege et al

in Journal of Materials Chemistry (2012), 22(33), 17086-17093

Due to their large surface-area-to-volume ratio as well as their interesting intrinsic optical and electronic properties, ZnO 1D nanostructures are part of the few dominant materials for nanotechnology ... [more ▼]

Due to their large surface-area-to-volume ratio as well as their interesting intrinsic optical and electronic properties, ZnO 1D nanostructures are part of the few dominant materials for nanotechnology. In this article, we compare two different routes of using the nanosphere lithography for the manufacturing of well-aligned, density-controlled ZnO nanowires by low-temperature hydrothermal growth. The first route uses the colloidal mask as a template for the patterned growth of the nanowires, while in the second route, the nanospheres act as a mask to pattern the seed layer. SEM and XRD characterizations are performed on samples manufactured by both routes and evidence patterned well-aligned nanowires with high c-axis texturing in the first synthetic route. Oriented growth is less pronounced in the second route, as well as the ability to adsorb dye. However, for the first route the dye loading measurements reveal that the amount of N-719 adsorbed is higher than on unpatterned ZnO nanowires films, highlighting an increased interface area. Reversible hydrophobicity to superhydrophilicity transition was observed and intelligently controlled by alternation of UV illumination and dark storage. This promising synthetic route opens exciting perspectives for the production of ZnO nanowire arrays with tunable density, wetting properties and enhanced adsorption properties. [less ▲]

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See detailNanostructuration induced by self-organization of polystyrene nanospheres as a template for the controlled growth of functional materials
Colson, Pierre ULiege

Doctoral thesis (2011)

In the last few years, nanosphere lithography emerged as an inexpensive, material specific and high-output nanostructure fabrication process to manufacture arrays of periodic structures. The goal of this ... [more ▼]

In the last few years, nanosphere lithography emerged as an inexpensive, material specific and high-output nanostructure fabrication process to manufacture arrays of periodic structures. The goal of this thesis was centered on both parts of the nanosphere lithography process, namely first the optimization of monolayer colloidal masks prepared by spin coating of monodisperse polystyrene (PS) nanospheres and secondly the use of these masks to develop new attractive applications in various fields. In order to assess the quality of the manufactured colloidal crystal masks, we developed a computerized image analysis procedure (Matlab) based on SEM micrographs. We successfully performed the different stages of the image analysis in such a way to discriminate and identify each nanosphere. As a quantification of order in the self-organized nanospheres, we chose to determine the percentage of hexacoordinated nanospheres by computing the distances between each of them. We applied experimental design to spin coating to evaluate the efficiency of this method to extract and model the relationships between the experimental parameters and the degree of ordering in the particles monolayers. We identified adequate spin coating parameters to synthesize large defect-free domains, reaching up to 200 μm2, which is the highest value ever reported for samples prepared by spin coating. Statistical analysis highlighted that rapid substrate acceleration and high rotation rates are necessary to get large, well-ordered areas. We also studied the surfactant concentration usually added to the beads suspension or the use of reactive ion etching (RIE) process to modify the masks. By using PS nanosphere templates (490 nm or 250 nm diameter), we successfully manufactured large arrays of L10-Fe50Pt50 and Co nanotriangles with uniform sizes. In addition to crystallographic and microstructural characterizations, we evaluated the magnetic properties of the nanostructures both from a qualitative (MFM) and quantitative (SQUID) point of view. The magnetic stability of the single-domain FePt nanodots was evidenced by focused MOKE analysis. This is of major importance for further use in magnetic storage applications and has never been reported yet. The soft magnetic Co nanodots displayed either single domain or vortex domains states, depending on the magnetization direction. The MOKE hysteresis loops revealed an increased coercive field compared with thin films. This is probably due to a specific magnetization reversal process caused by the shape of the nanodots. Oxide nanostructures were then manufactured. The polystyrene templates (490 nm diameter) were used for the guided hydrothermal growth of well-aligned ZnO nanowires. The control of the spacing between the nanowires combined with high c-axis preferred orientation led to higher dye loading values compared with continuous unpatterned films. This was undoubtedly attributed to an increased accessible surface area due to the patterning. Moreover, the increased roughness due to the patterning induced a higher water contact angle compared with an unpatterned ZnO nanowire array. Reversible superhydrophylicity to hydrophobicity was observed and controlled by successive UV illumination and O2 annealing. The achievements attained in this work have brought a significant contribution to the field of nano- and microfabrication. New pathways were opened for interesting future work with respect to continued fundamental and applied research. [less ▲]

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See detailExperimental Design applied to spin coating of 2D colloidal crystal masks : a relevant method?
Colson, Pierre ULiege; Cloots, Rudi ULiege; Henrist, Catherine ULiege

in Langmuir (2011), 27(21), 12800-12806

Monolayers of colloidal spheres are used as masks in nanosphere lithography (NSL) for the selective deposition of nanostructured layers. Several methods exist for the formation of the self-organized ... [more ▼]

Monolayers of colloidal spheres are used as masks in nanosphere lithography (NSL) for the selective deposition of nanostructured layers. Several methods exist for the formation of the self-organized particles monolayers, among which spin coating appears to be very promising. However, a spin coating process is defined by several parameters like several ramps, rotation speeds and durations. All parameters influence the spreading and drying of the droplet containing the particles. Moreover, scientists are confronted to the formation of numerous defects in spin coated layers, limiting well-ordered areas to a few µm2. So far, empiricism mainly ruled the world of nanoparticles self-organization by spin coating and much of the literature is experimentally based. Therefore, the development of experimental protocols to control the ordering of particles is a major goal for further progress in NSL. We applied experimental design to spin coating, to evaluate the efficiency of this method to extract and model the relationships between the experimental parameters and the degree of ordering in the particles monolayers. A set of experiments was generated by the MODDE software and applied to the spin coating of latex suspension (diam. 490 nm). We calculated the ordering by a homemade image analysis tool. The results of Partial Least Squares (PLS) modeling show that the proposed mathematical model only fits data from strictly monolayers but is not predictive for new sets of parameters. We submitted the data to Principal Component Analysis (PCA) that was able to explain 91% of the results when based on strictly monolayers samples. PCA shows that the ordering was positively correlated to the ramp time and negatively correlated to the first rotation speed. We obtain large defect-free domains with the best set of parameters tested in this study. This protocol leads to areas of 200 µm2, which has never been reported so far. [less ▲]

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See detailWell Shaped Mn(3)O(4) Nano-octahedra with Anomalous Magnetic Behavior and Enhanced Photodecomposition Properties
Li, Yu; Tan, Haiyan; Yang, Xiao-Yu et al

in Small : Nano Micro (2011), 7(4), 475-483

Very uniform and well shaped Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra are synthesized using a simple hydrothermal method under the help of polyethylene glycol (PEG200) as a reductant and shape-directing agent. The nano ... [more ▼]

Very uniform and well shaped Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra are synthesized using a simple hydrothermal method under the help of polyethylene glycol (PEG200) as a reductant and shape-directing agent. The nano-octahedra formation mechanism is monitored. The shape and crystal orientation of the nanoparticles is reconstructed by scanning electron microscopy and electron tomography, which reveals that the nano-octahedra only selectively expose {101} facets at the external surfaces. The magnetic testing demonstrates that the Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra exhibit anomalous magnetic properties: the Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra around 150 nm show a similar Curie temperature and blocking temperature to Mn(3)O(4) nanoparticles with 10 nm size because of the vertical axis of [001] plane and the exposed {101} facets. With these Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra as a catalyst, the photodecomposition of rhodamine B is evaluated and it is found that the photodecomposition activity of Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra is much superior to that of commercial Mn(3)O(4) powders. The anomalous magnetic properties and high superior photodecomposition activity of well shaped Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra should be related to the special shape of the nanoparticles and the abundantly exposed {101} facets at the external surfaces. Therefore, the shape preference can largely broaden the application of the Mn(3)O(4) nano-octahedra. [less ▲]

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See detailElaboration of Magnetic Nanodots by Nanosphere Lithography : a Computerized Method for Order Quantification
Colson, Pierre ULiege; Cloots, Rudi ULiege; Henrist, Catherine ULiege

Conference (2008, December 01)

Nanosphere lithography (NSL) is an ideal inexpensive fabrication tool for producing regular, nearly homogenous arrays of nanoparticules with different sizes. There are many different methods for the ... [more ▼]

Nanosphere lithography (NSL) is an ideal inexpensive fabrication tool for producing regular, nearly homogenous arrays of nanoparticules with different sizes. There are many different methods for the fabrication of the latex monolayer based on electrophoresis, the controlled evaporation of a solvent from the suspension containing latex particles, spincoating etc… We focused our work on this last method. The main problem with formation of 2D latex monolayers is that there are always a high number of different structural defects such as: point defects (vacancies), line defects (dislocations) and also many disordered areas. The influence of the different spincoating parameters on the amount of defects was determined by image analysis of SEM micrographies from the different samples. FePt and Co films were deposited onto quartz substrates through the polystryrene monolayers by magnetron sputtering. The nanopsheres were removed by sonication in toluene. Post-deposition annealing treatment was performed under reductive atmosphere for the FePt nanodots in order to transform the as-deposited chemically disoredered face-centered cubic (fcc) structure into the chemically ordered face-centered tetragonal (fct) phase (L10-phase). DRX , SEM and MFM analysis were performed on the different samples. [less ▲]

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See detailCovalent binding of antitumor benzoacronycines to double-stranded DNA induces helix opening and the formation of single-stranded DNA: Unique consequences of a novel DNA-bonding mechanism
David-Cordonnier, Marie Hélène; Laine, W; Lansiaux, A et al

in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics (2005), 4(1), 71-80

The majority of DNA-binding small molecules known thus far stabilize duplex DNA against heat denaturation. A high, drug-induced increase in the melting temperature (T-m) of DNA is generally viewed as a ... [more ▼]

The majority of DNA-binding small molecules known thus far stabilize duplex DNA against heat denaturation. A high, drug-induced increase in the melting temperature (T-m) of DNA is generally viewed as a good criterion to select DNA ligands and is a common feature of several anticancer drugs such as intercalators (e.g., anthracyclines) and alkylators (e.g., ecteinascidin 743). The reverse situation (destabilization of DNA to facilitate its denaturation) may be an attractive option for the identification of therapeutic agents acting on the DNA structure. We have identified the tumor-active benzoacronycine derivative S23906-1 [(+/-)-cis-1, 2-diacetoxy-6-methoxy-3,3,14-trimethyl 1,2,3,14-tetrahydro-7H-benzo[b]pyrano[3,2]acridin-7- one] as a potent DNA alkylating agent endowed with a helicase-like activity. Using complementary molecular approaches, we show that covalent binding to DNA of the diacetate compound S23906-1 and its monoacetate analogue S28687-1 induces a marked destabilization of the double helix with the formation of alkylated ssDNA. The DNA-bonding properties and effects on DNA structure of a series of benzoacronycine derivatives, including the dicarbamate analogue S29385-1, were studied using complementary biochemical (electromobility shift assay, nuclease S1 mapping) and spectroscopic (fluorescence and T-m measurements) approaches. Alkylation of guanines in DNA by S28687-1 leads to a local denaturation of DNA, which becomes susceptible to cleavage by nuclease S1 and significantly decreases the T-m of DNA. The drug also directly alkylates single-strand DNA, but mass spectrometry experiments indicate that guanines in duplexes are largely preferred over single-stranded structures. This molecular study expands the repertoire of DNA-binding mechanisms and provides a new dimension for DNA recognition by small molecules. [less ▲]

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