Reverse Microemulsion-mediated Synthesis of Monometallic and Bimetallic Early Transition Metal Carbide and Nitride Nanoparticles
Author(s)Hunt, Sean Thomas; Roman, Yuriy
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A reverse microemulsion is used to encapsulate monometallic or bimetallic early transition metal oxide nanoparticles in microporous silica shells. The silica-encapsulated metal oxide nanoparticles are then carburized in a methane/hydrogen atmosphere at temperatures over 800 °C to form silica-encapsulated early transition metal carbide nanoparticles. During the carburization process, the silica shells prevent the sintering of adjacent carbide nanoparticles while also preventing the deposition of excess surface carbon. Alternatively, the silica-encapsulated metal oxide nanoparticles can be nitridized in an ammonia atmosphere at temperatures over 800 °C to form silica-encapsulated early transition metal nitride nanoparticles. By adjusting the reverse microemulsion parameters, the thickness of the silica shells, and the carburization/nitridation conditions, the transition metal carbide or nitride nanoparticles can be tuned to various sizes, compositions, and crystal phases. After carburization or nitridation, the silica shells are then removed using either a room-temperature aqueous ammonium bifluoride solution or a 0.1 to 0.5 M NaOH solution at 40-60 °C. While the silica shells are dissolving, a high surface area support, such as carbon black, can be added to these solutions to obtain supported early transition metal carbide or nitride nanoparticles. If no high surface area support is added, then the nanoparticles can be stored as a nanodispersion or centrifuged to obtain a nanopowder.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Chemical Engineering
Journal of Visualized Experiments
Hunt, Sean T., and Yuriy Roman-Leshkov. “Reverse Microemulsion-Mediated Synthesis of Monometallic and Bimetallic Early Transition Metal Carbide and Nitride Nanoparticles.” JoVE no. 105 (November 27, 2015). © 2015 Journal of Visualized Experiments
Final published version