Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Facile Synthesis Of Nanoparticles With Multiple Functions

Date:
July 15, 2009
Source:
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore
Summary:
Scientists have discovered a new environmentally friendly method to synthesize a wide variety of nanoparticles inexpensively. Metals that dissolve in water were successfully extracted and transferred into a layer of an organic solvent that floats on water.

Nanostructured materials have garnered great interest worldwide due to their unique size-dependent properties for chemical, electronic, structural, medical and consumer applications.

Related Articles


Singapore's Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) has discovered a new environmentally friendly method to synthesize a wide variety of nanoparticles inexpensively. This new chemical synthesis has been recently published in Nature Materials.

IBN researchers have developed a protocol to transfer metal ions from an aqueous solution to an organic solution such as toluene. Metal compounds that can dissolve in water are inexpensive and commonly available.

Many useful metals and scarce materials that are soluble in water may now become readily employed in the synthesis of nanoparticles. This new approach developed by IBN is a simple, room-temperature process that does not produce toxic chemicals.

The IBN research team has successfully transferred metal ions rapidly from water to an organic medium by mixing a solution of metal salts dissolved in water with an ethanol solution of dodecylamine (DDA). The metals would bond with the DDA and can then be extracted with an organic solvent, chemical compounds that usually have a low boiling point, evaporate easily or can be removed by distillation. Solvents can be used to extract soluble chemical complexes from a mixture.

At IBN, the transfer of the metal ions from the aqueous phase to the organic phase was successfully applied towards the synthesis of a variety of metallic, alloy and semiconductor nanoparticles.

In contrast to other approaches for nanoparticles synthesis, the IBN protocol allows metal-based nanoparticles to be prepared in an organic medium using water-soluble, inexpensive, common metal precursors.

This method is highly efficient and easily applied to derive many types of nanoparticles that have interesting applications, including metal-semiconductor nanocomposites and hybrid nanoparticles.

Besides IBN's focus on applying this protocol to the nanocrystalline synthesis of metals, semiconductors and their hybrids, the extraction of metals dissolved in water would be significant for applications in environmental remediation, e.g. extraction of heavy metals from water and soil.

"Water pollution from heavy metals is a major long-term economic and healthcare problem that has global implications. Once contaminated, it is often difficult and expensive to purify the affected environment and extract the pollutants. Besides highly toxic metals such as mercury and lead, other valuable metals, including gold, silver, iridium and osmium, are also soluble in water, and may be extracted by our protocol," remarked IBN Research Scientist Jun Yang, Ph.D.

"At this point, it is possible to extract the metals very effectively using an organic solvent such as toluene to remove the metal residue. Organic solvents are less dense than ethanol or water and float on top of the aqueous solution. When we agitate the mixture, the metals dissolve in the toluene and are completely removed from the ethanol and water. Our process allows us to extract metals from water without leaching out the mineral ions that are normally present in water or soil," said Dr. Yang.

"We have demonstrated a general protocol for transferring metal ions from water to an organic phase. This technique may be applied to transfer a wide range of transition metal ions from water. We can greatly facilitate and reduce the cost of producing a variety of metallic, alloy, semiconductor and semiconductor-metal hybrid nanoparticles through our simple and flexible approach to engineer advanced materials with novel structures and multiple functionalities" said Jackie Y. Ying, Ph.D., IBN Executive Director and principal investigator of this research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Yang et al. A general phase-transfer protocol for metal ions and its application in nanocrystal synthesis. Nature Material, 2009; DOI: 10.1038/nmat2490

Cite This Page:

Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. "Facile Synthesis Of Nanoparticles With Multiple Functions." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 July 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090713170752.htm>.
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. (2009, July 15). Facile Synthesis Of Nanoparticles With Multiple Functions. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090713170752.htm
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. "Facile Synthesis Of Nanoparticles With Multiple Functions." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090713170752.htm (accessed December 17, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Sony Hopes To Make Any Glasses 'Smart'

How Sony Hopes To Make Any Glasses 'Smart'

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Sony's glasses module attaches to the temples of various eye- and sunglasses to add a display and wireless connectivity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Los Angeles Police To Receive 7,000 Body Cameras

Los Angeles Police To Receive 7,000 Body Cameras

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the cameras will be distributed starting Jan. 1. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Bring Player Pianos Back to Life

Researchers Bring Player Pianos Back to Life

AP (Dec. 17, 2014) Stanford University wants to unlock the secrets of the player piano. Researchers are restoring and studying self-playing pianos and the music rolls that recorded major composers performing their own work. (Dec. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
France's Sauternes Wine Threatened by New Train Line

France's Sauternes Wine Threatened by New Train Line

AFP (Dec. 16, 2014) Winemakers in southwestern France's Bordeaux are concerned about a proposed high speed train line that could affect the microclimate required for the region's sweet wine. Duration: 01:06 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins