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Characterization of thermochemical properties of Al nanoparticle and NiO nanowire composites

John Z Wen1*, Sophie Ringuette2, Golnaz Bohlouli-Zanjani1, Anming Hu1, Ngoc Ha Nguyen3, John Persic4, Catalin F Petre2 and Y Norman Zhou1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering, University of Waterloo, 200 University Ave. West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, Canada

2 Defence Research and Development Canada - Valcartier, 2459 Pie-XI Blvd North, Quebec, QC G3K1Y1, Canada

3 Department of Chemistry, Center for Computational Science, Hanoi National University of Education, Hanoi, Vietnam

4 Microbonds Inc, 151 Amber St. Unit 12, Markham, ON L3R 3B3, Canada

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:184  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-184

Published: 20 April 2013


Thermochemical properties and microstructures of the composite of Al nanoparticles and NiO nanowires were characterized. The nanowires were synthesized using a hydrothermal method and were mixed with these nanoparticles by sonication. Electron microscopic images of these composites showed dispersed NiO nanowires decorated with Al nanoparticles. Thermal analysis suggests the influence of NiO mass ratio was insignificant with regard to the onset temperature of the observed thermite reaction, although energy release values changed dramatically with varying NiO ratios. Reaction products from the fuel-rich composites were found to include elemental Al and Ni, Al2O3, and AlNi. The production of the AlNi phase, confirmed by an ab initio molecular dynamics simulation, was associated with the formation of some metallic liquid spheres from the thermite reaction.

Composite; Aluminum nanoparticles; NiO nanowires; Alumina; Nickel aluminide