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Nanoscience and nanotechnology have aroused tremendous and worldwide concerns in recent decades. In the early 1990s, developments in physics made it possible to realise revolutionary progress on characterization approaches in nanoscale, which refreshed researchers’ understanding towards nanomaterials. Along with in-depth exploration of nanomaterial properties, and extensive attempts on their synthesis methods, nanoscience and nanotechnology were gradually developed into a cutting-edge interdisciplinary research field.

Among the various material candidates for the construction of nanostructures, the growth of research interest in 3rd generation semiconducting materials, such as SiC, GaN, AlN and ZnO has brought a tremendous impetus to the high-tech industry from both a scientific technology and industry strategies perspective. A series of physical superiorities to the 1st (Ge, Si) and 2nd (GaAs, InSb) generation semiconducting materials, such as electrical properties and optical properties have been highlighted, especially the wide band gap which is suitable for high-frequency, high-power electronic devices and circuits. Recently, studies on ZnO, which is one of the most important 3rd generation semiconductors, has entered a new stage of comprehensive use due to its multi-functional characteristics.

Since 2000, my group has been devoted to ZnO nanomaterials. Recently, along with the highly developed multi-disciplinary fusion and integration, considerable progress has been achieved in both fundamental research and technique applications of ZnO nanostructures. To date, we have published nearly 400 peer-reviewed journal papers and authored more than 40 patents in this field, which has significantly broadened the research and application areas.

This book is mainly based on the published works in my group. It covers our research results for ZnO nanostructures ranging from fabrication to characterisation and from prototype applications to practical applications. Certainly, the worldwide milestone achievements in the field have also been introduced. Therefore, this book could serve as a reference book for students, researchers or other relevant personnel to promote the development of this field. This book is divided into ten chapters, and overall guided by Prof. Yue Zhang. The detailed chapter theme and co-authors are as follows: Chapter 1, Overview; Chapter 2, Designing and Controllable Fabrication (Qingliang Liao); Chapter 3, Property Characterisation and Optimisation (Xu Sun, Yanwei Shen, Pei Lin, Zhuo Kang); Chapter 4, Electromechanical Devices (Zheng Zhang); Chapter 5, Photoelectrical Devices (Zhiming Bai, Yanwei Shen, Pei Lin, Guangjie Zhang); Chapter 6, Photoelectrochemical Devices (Zhuo Kang, Zhiming Bai); Chapter 7, Biosensing Devices (Yu Song, Zhuo Kang); Chapter 8, Self-powered Devices (Zheng Zhang, Zhiming Bai); Chapter 9, Service Behaviour (Peifeng Li, Qi Zhang); Chapter 10, Field Emission and Electromagnetic Wave Absorption (Qingliang Liao).

I would like to thank my current and former group members, as well as collaborators who have dedicated themselves to the development of ZnO nanoscience as well as its applications. I would also like to acknowledge the strong financial support from the Ministry of Science and Technology of The People's Republic of China, the Ministry of Education of The People's Republic of China, the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, the People's Government of Beijing Municipality.

Lastly and most importantly, I thank my family for their continuous understanding and support. The research could not be carried out without their strong support.

Yue Zhang

University of Science and Technology Beijing, Beijing, China

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