Organic Vapor Jet Printing (OVJP) is a method of depositing organic materials onto a substrate in a controlled manner. The organic material is sublimed in a carrier gas flow to be delivered to a substrate, while a coaxial flow of a protective gas allows for accurate delivery, without degradation of material property (e.g. electrical properties). One of the promising applications for this technology is in the production of organic photovoltaics.
This project sought to understand the formation, and potential utility, of rounded features possible to form by way of this OVJP technique. Through beam-line experiments these nano-lobes, as we termed them, were found out to be sub-micron facetless crystals (similar to that found in starfish and the optical calcium carbonate lenses of the brittle star). These nano-scale features could be useful in sensors or as possible drug delivery methods.
Growth and modelling of spherical crystalline morphologies of molecular materials. Nat. Commun. 5:5204 doi: 10.1038/ncomms6204 (2014). [Full Text]