Effect of hydrolysis rate on the properties of TiO2-CNT nanocomposite powder prepared by sol-gel method

Document Type: Research Paper


School of Metallurgy and Materials Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Tehran


In this study, TiO2-10%wt. carbon nanotube (CNT) nanocomposite powders were synthesized by sol-gel method at various hydrolysis rate affected by different reaction agents of acetyl acetone and benzyl alcohol. Crystallization of TiO2 was then achieved through calcination at 400 °C. The properties of nanocomposite powder investigated by scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and diffuse reflectance spectroscopy. The results showed that, the crystalline TiO2 with anatase structure was produced after calcination. The crystallite size of TiO2 depended on the hydrolysis rate which was increased from 25 nm at higher hydrolysis rate by benzyl alcohol to 55 nm at slower hydrolysis rate by acetyl acetone. Before calcination, the results have shown that the slower hydrolysis rate yields relatively large particles with a plate like morphology in contrast to the presence of small particles with significant agglomeration at higher hydrolysis rate by benzyl alcohol. After calcination, high hydrolysis reaction through the use of benzyl alcohol offers easy access to the TiO2-10%wt. CNT nanocomposite with well controlled coating and desirable interactions between TiO2 and the CNTs. The thickness of TiO2 coating on CNTs in this way was 80 nm. Also, TiO2 particle size depended on the hydrolysis rate, decreased from 1 μm in presence of acetyl acetone to 150 nm in presence of benzyl alcohol. The band gap energy at higher hydrolysis rate by benzyl alcohol was 2.95 eV.


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