Advances in one-dimensional nanostructured borates：from fundamental thermodynamics to engineering practice
ZHANG Zhaoqiang, ZHU Wancheng
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One-dimensional (1D) nanomaterials, including nanowires, nanorods, nanotubes, nanobelts, nanowhiskers, etc., have emerged as one of the research highlights due to their unique 1D structure and extensive applications in electronics, optics, catalysis, energy, environment, and medicine, etc. Borates have also attracted much concern owing to their versatile composition and novel properties as well as applications in multitudes of fields. Herein, the advances in the research focusing on the 1D nanostructured alkali/alkaline-earth metal borates are reviewed, from four aspects including fundamental thermodynamics, controllable synthesis, applications development, and engineering practice. In addition, the hydrothermal-thermal conversion (HTC) route to 1D nanostructured magnesium borates developed mainly in our group is compared with the conventional high temperature synthetic techniques such as molten salt synthesis and chemical vapor deposition, and the results show that, the HTC strategy prevails in morphology controllable synthesis and further pilot scale-up production. Finally, taking the magnesium borates nanowhiskers as an example, main challenges particularly the green hydrothermal synthesis towards corrosion bottleneck exposed in the hydrothermal mass production, as well as corresponding strategies in engineering practice are analyzed from the four aspects.