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Anodized nanotubular and nanoporous zirconia membranes are of interest for applications involving elevated temperatures in excess of 400 °C, such as templates for the synthesis of nanostructures, catalyst supports, fuel cells and sensors. Thermal stability is thus an important attribute. The study described in this paper shows that the as-anodized nanoporous membranes can withstand more adverse temperature–time combinations than nanotubular membranes. Chemical treatment of the nanoporous membranes was found to further enhance their thermal stability. The net result is an enhancement in the limiting temperature from 500 °C for nanotubular membranes to 1000 °C for the chemically treated nanoporous membranes. The reasons for membrane degradation on thermal exposure and the mechanism responsible for retarding the same are discussed within the framework of the theory of thermal grooving.
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Journal of Materials Chemistry
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