Generalized self-assembly of scalable two-dimensional transition metal oxide nanosheets
Two-dimensional (2D) transition metal oxide systems present exotic electronic properties and high specific surface areas, and also demonstrate promising applications ranging from electronics to energy storage. Yet, in contrast to other types of nanostructures, the question as to whether we could assemble 2D nanomaterials with an atomic thickness from molecules in a general way, which may give them some interesting properties such as those of graphene, still remains unresolved. Herein, we report a generalized and fundamental approach to molecular self-assembly synthesis of ultrathin 2D nanosheets of transition metal oxides by rationally employing lamellar reverse micelles. It is worth emphasizing that the synthesized crystallized ultrathin transition metal oxide nanosheets possess confined thickness, high specific surface area and chemically reactive facets, so that they could have promising applications in nanostructured electronics, photonics, sensors, and energy conversion and storage devices.