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Open AccessArticle

Nano-Sized Fe(III) Oxide Particles Starting from an Innovative and Eco-Friendly Synthesis Method

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Department of Industrial and Information Engineering and Economics, University of L’Aquila, Piazzale E. Pontieri 1, 67100, Monteluco di Roio, Roio Poggio, I-67100 L’Aquila (AQ), Italy
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Department of Physical and Chemical Sciences, University of L’Aquila, via Vetoio, I-67100 L’Aquila (AQ), Italy
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(2), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10020323
Received: 27 January 2020 / Revised: 10 February 2020 / Accepted: 11 February 2020 / Published: 14 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Synthesis, Interfaces and Nanostructures)
This paper introduces an original, eco-friendly and scalable method to synthesize ferrihydrite nanoparticles in aqueous suspensions, which can also be used as a precursor to produce α-hematite nanoparticles. The method, never used before to synthesize iron oxides, is based on an ion exchange process allowing to operate in one-step, with reduced times, at room temperature and ambient pressure, and using cheap or renewable reagents. The influence of reagent concentrations and time of the process on the ferrihydrite features is considered. The transformation to hematite is then analyzed and discussed in relation to different procedures: (1) A natural aging in the water at room temperature; and (2) heat treatments at different temperatures and times. Structural and morphological features of the obtained nanoparticles are investigated by means of several techniques, such as X-ray diffraction, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, transmission and scanning electron microscopy, thermal analysis, nitrogen adsorption and magnetic measurements. Ferrihydrite shows the typical spherical morphology and a very high specific surface area of 420 m2/g. Rhombohedral or plate-like hexagonal hematite nanoparticles are obtained by the two procedures, characterized by dimensions of 50 nm and 30 nm, respectively, and a specific surface area up to 57 m2/g, which is among the highest values reported in the literature for hematite NPs. View Full-Text
Keywords: nanoparticles synthesis; iron oxide nanoparticles; 2-line ferrihydrite; hematite nanoparticles; magnetic measurement; XPS; XRD; TEM; FE-SEM nanoparticles synthesis; iron oxide nanoparticles; 2-line ferrihydrite; hematite nanoparticles; magnetic measurement; XPS; XRD; TEM; FE-SEM
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Macera, L.; Taglieri, G.; Daniele, V.; Passacantando, M.; D’Orazio, F. Nano-Sized Fe(III) Oxide Particles Starting from an Innovative and Eco-Friendly Synthesis Method. Nanomaterials 2020, 10, 323.

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