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Chirality Affecting Reaction Dynamics of HgS Nanostructures Simultaneously Visualized in Real and Reciprocal Space

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posted on 23.09.2021, 14:36 authored by Zetan Cao, Jia He, Zhiwen Liu, Haoran Zhang, Bin Chen
Chirality involved reactions enable to probe features in the fields of asymmetric synthesis and catalysis, which allow to gain insight into the fundamental mechanisms of topochemically controlled reactions. However, in situ observation of the chirality-associated reaction dynamics with simultaneous structural determination of microscopic features has been lacking. Here, we report the direct visualization of the electron-beam-stimulated reaction dynamics of HgS nanostructures with chiral and achiral morphologies simultaneously in both real and reciprocal space. Under the electron-beam excitation of HgS nanostructures, the formation and evaporation dynamics of Hg nanodroplets were vividly pictured, while the reciprocal space imaging revealed the structural transformation from monocrystalline to polycrystalline. Interestingly, such induced changes were size dependent, which were slowed when involving the chirality in the nanostructures. The finding offers a fundamental understanding of topochemically controlled reaction mechanisms and holds promise of tuning asymmetric synthesis for catalysis-related applications.