Zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles have gained widespread interest due to their unique properties, making them suitable for a range of applications. Several methods for their production are available, and of these, controlled synthesis techniques are particularly favourable. Large-scale culturing of Chlorella vulgaris
produces secretory carbohydrates as a waste product, which have been shown to play an important role in directing the particle size and morphology of nanoparticles. In this investigation, ZnO nanorods were produced through a controlled synthesis approach using secretory carbohydrates from C. vulgaris
, which presents a cost-effective and sustainable alternative to the existing techniques. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) analysis, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and UV-Vis spectroscopy were used to characterise the nanorods. The prepared nanorods exhibited a broad range of UV absorption, which suggests that the particles are a promising broadband sun blocker and are likely to be effective for the fabrication of sunscreens with protection against both UVB (290–320 nm) and UVA (320–400 nm) radiations. The antimicrobial activity of the prepared nanorods against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria was also assessed. The nanostructures had a crystalline structure and rod-like appearance, with an average length and width of 150 nm and 21 nm, respectively. The nanorods also demonstrated notable antibacterial activity, and 250 μg/mL was determined to be the most effective concentration. The antibacterial properties of the ZnO nanorods suggest its suitability for a range of antimicrobial uses, such as in the food industry and for various biomedical applications.
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