Synthesis and Characterization of Neodymium nanoparticles

Maya Muyurina Castro De La Torre, Ryan Fukuda

Abstract


The study of nanoparticles is currently an area of great interest because they exhibit new and improved properties compared to their bulk material. These properties make them very valuable in numerous applications in areas such as optics, biomedicine, and electronics. Our laboratory has been focused on the synthesis and characterization of neodymium nanoparticles. The neodymium clusters are produced by the reverse micelle method, which consists of creating small spherical cages that are formed around the reactants when the surfactant is combined with a polar and non-polar solvent. A solution containing the reducing agent is then added to produce the desired metallic nanoparticles. The small cages protectively confine the reduced reactant and prevent it from combining into larger size. Vacuum filtration is used to separate our products and excess surfactant. Three reverse micelle systems are under investigation for their ability to efficiently form small and stable reverse micelles: hexane/methanol/AOT, heptane/methanol/AOT, and heptane/methanol/DDAB. Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Energy Dispersive X-ray (EDX) and light microscope analysis showed that the most effective micelle system was heptane/methanol/AOT because its resulting neodymium particles had small diameters and were more uniform in shape. The size of the synthesized particles using this arrangement was in the range of 1-10 micrometers. The system hexane/methanol/AOT produced uniform neodymium particles of 10-45micrometers in diameter while the remaining system did not show any formation of uniform particles.

Keywords


Reverse Micelle; Neodymium; Nanoparticles

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