Nanosynthesis of Iron Based Material for Green Energy
University of Kansas
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In this work, nanosynthesis of multiple iron-based materials are explored to further their use in green renewable-energy applications. First, the nanosynthesis of the abundant, non-toxic semi-conductor Iron Disulfide (Iron Pyrite, Fool's Gold, FeS2) is investigated. Within these studies, it became possible to tune the shape of the FeS2 nanoparticles easily by modifying injection temperatures and iron precursors. From here, the growth mechanisms of the different shapes were elucidated by examining different time points within the synthesis. It was discovered that the FeS2 did not grow by Ostwald Ripening, but instead by Oriented Attachment. Knowing this, it was possible to not only further the shapes of FeS2 nanoparticles, but also manipulate the size and crystallinity. Focus was then shifted to creating larger micron sized FeS2 crystals. Larger crystals where achieved by a unique FeS nanowire precursor followed by sulfurization. The dominant crystal surface of these crystals could be regulated simply by the time and temperature of the sulfurization. Second, synthetic control of magnetic nanoparticles was examined. A novel synthesis of Iron Palladium (FePd) made possible by interdiffusion of iron into palladium nanocores was identified. Furthermore, a shell of Iron oxide (Fe2O3) could facilely be grown on the FePd nanoparticles, generating a FePd/Fe2O3 core/shell nanoparticle. These FePd/Fe2O3 core/shell particles provided an excellent foundation to create an L10- FePd/α-Fe exchange-coupled nanocomposite that exhibited improved magnetic properties compared to its single phase FePd counterpart. However, the stabilizing ligand used within this FePd synthesis doped into the final nanoparticles, degraded the magnetic properties. iii To overcome the dopant ligand problem, a novel nanoalloy synthetic strategy of Metal Redox was developed. The Metal Redox strategy utilized the inherent reducing power of zero-valent metal sources to create a vast sampling of metal nanoalloys without the need of ligands or excess reducing agents. Stoichiometry of these nanoalloys could be readily adjusted by temperature and explained by simple chemical equilibrium concepts. The Metal Redox methodology was then expanded to shape control and tri-metallic alloys. Finally, the unique MnBi nanoalloy system was created using Metal Redox, making it the first ever reported solution processed formation of this material.
- Chemistry Dissertations and Theses 
- Dissertations 
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