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[en] Nanomaterials, solids with very small particle size, form the basis of new technologies that are revolutionizing fields such as energy, lighting, electronics, medical diagnostics, and drug delivery. These nanoparticles are different from conventional bulk materials in many ways we do not yet fully understand. This project focused on their structure and thermodynamics and emphasized the role of water in nanoparticle surfaces. Using a unique and synergistic combination of high-tech techniques-namely oxide melt solution calorimetry, cryogenic heat capacity measurements, and inelastic neutron scattering-this work has identified differences in structure, thermodynamic stability, and water behavior on nanoparticles as a function of composition and particle size. The systematics obtained increase the fundamental understanding needed to synthesize, retain, and apply these technologically important nanomaterials and to predict and tailor new materials for enhanced functionality, eventually leading to a more sustainable way of life. Highlights are reported on the following topics: surface energies, thermochemistry of nanoparticles, and changes in stability at the nanoscale; heat capacity models and the gapped phonon spectrum; control of pore structure, acid sites, and thermal stability in synthetic γ-aluminas; the lattice contribution is the same for bulk and nanomaterials; and inelastic neutron scattering studies of water on nanoparticle surfaces.