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Open Access Nano Express

Low-temperature precipitation synthesis of flower-like ZnO with lignin amine and its optical properties

Ting-Ting Miao1, Dong-Xiao Sun1, Yuan-Ru Guo1*, Chuan Li1, Yan-Li Ma1, Gui-Zhen Fang1 and Qing-Jiang Pan2*

Author Affiliations

1 Key Laboratory of Bio-based Material Science & Technology (Ministry of Education), Materials Science and Engineering College, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040, China

2 Key Laboratory of Functional Inorganic Material Chemistry (Ministry of Education), School of Chemistry and Materials Science, Heilongjiang University, Harbin 150080, China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:431  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-431

Published: 17 October 2013


A facile precipitation method has been developed to synthesize ZnO with [bis(2-aminoethyl)amino]methyl lignin (lignin amine) that is chemically modified from low-cost pulp industrial lignin. The obtained ZnO crystallites have been characterized to exhibit a hexagonal wurtzite structure, and their sizes have been determined at ca. 24 nm (mean value). These ZnO nanocrystallites are of high purity and well crystallized. Our present synthetic approach apparently exempts the commonly used calcining purification procedure. It is found that the morphology of ZnO and its specific surface area are capable of being tuned by varying the added lignin amine amount. Using the optimal 10 mL lignin amine, the synthesized ZnO exhibits flower-like morphology with proper specific surface area. Additionally, photoluminescence property of the obtainable ZnO displays two emissive bands at 383 nm (sharp) and in the range of 480 to 600 nm (broad) at room temperature. Their intensities were revealed to depend on the added lignin amine amount as well as on the molar ratio of Zn2+/OH-. The present investigation demonstrates that our method is simple, eco-friendly, and cost-effective for the synthesis of small-size ZnO materials.

One-step synthesis; Lignin amine; ZnO nanocrystallites; Photoluminescence