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Inorganic Phototropism: Emergent Properties Directing Growth of Mesostructured Semiconductors


Meier, Madeline Claire (2023) Inorganic Phototropism: Emergent Properties Directing Growth of Mesostructured Semiconductors. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/rqwq-tv81.


Nature exhibits emergent growth phenomena where in neighboring features result in ensemble effects that direct the overall growth morphologies. Plants, such as palm trees, display phototropism where-in the crown grows toward the time weighted average position of the sun to optimize solar collection. A methodology, known as inorganic phototropic growth, utilizes a similar mechanism with the incident illumination during electrochemical deposition directing the growth of mesostructured semiconductors. This photoelectrochemical deposition process, generates highly anisotropic, periodic lamellar features resulting in the capability to fabricate nanostructured features over macroscopic areas. The process is lithography-free and uses no templates or directing agents of any kind and relies solely on the incident illumination to direct semiconductor growth. In this thesis, the nanophotonic phenomena and emergent synergistic absorption that drives the inorganic phototropic growth process was investigated using unconstrained and confined susbtrates. Additionally, the impact of inclined, off-normal incident illumination on the evolution of structure morphology was investigated for patterned and isotropic substrates revealing the mechanism behind the non-monotonic relationship between incident angle and observed out-of-plane orientation for unconstrained substrates.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Biomimetic, light-mediated electrodeposition, mesostructure
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Major Option:Chemistry
Thesis Availability:Restricted to Caltech community only
Research Advisor(s):
  • Lewis, Nathan Saul
Thesis Committee:
  • Gray, Harry B. (chair)
  • Faber, Katherine T.
  • Blake, Geoffrey A.
  • Lewis, Nathan Saul
Defense Date:24 April 2023
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:06012023-020314168
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription adapted for Chapter 2 adapted for Chapter 3
Meier, Madeline Claire0000-0003-1608-0810
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:15254
Deposited By: Madeline Meier
Deposited On:02 Jun 2023 23:36
Last Modified:14 May 2024 17:21

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