Nanoparticles of magnetite anchored onto few-layer graphene: A highly efficient Fenton-like nanocomposite catalyst

Huan Yan Xu, Bo Li, Tian Nuo Shi, Yuan Wang, Sridhar Komarneni

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61 Scopus citations


Developing a catalyst with high efficiency and recyclability is an important issue for the heterogeneous Fenton-like systems. In this study, magnetic Fe3O4 and reduced graphene oxide (RGO) nanocomposites were prepared by a facile alkaline-thermal precipitation method and employed as a highly effective heterogeneous Fenton-like catalyst for methyl orange (MO) degradation. Characterization of these nanocomposites by XRD, FTIR, Raman, FESEM and TEM revealed that nanoparticles (NPs) of Fe3O4 were tightly anchored on the few-layer RGO sheets. The anchoring of Fe3O4 NPs and the reduction of GO were achieved in one pot without adding any other reducing agents. Based on the measurements of GO surface Zeta potentials, a possible anchoring mechanism of Fe3O4 NPs onto RGO sheets was given. The Fe3O4/RGO nanocomposites exhibited much higher Fenton-like catalytic efficiency for MO degradation than pure Fe3O4 NPs. This degradation process followed the first-order kinetics model, where k1 and T complied with the Arrhenius equation with Ea of 12.79 kJ/mol and A of 8.20 s−1. Magnetic measurements revealed that Fe3O4/RGO nanocomposites were ferromagnetic as indicated by the presence of magnetic hysteresis loops. The Fe3O4/RGO nanocomposites showed good stability and recyclability. Hydroxyl radicals, [rad]OH were determined as the dominant oxidative species in Fe3O4/RGO-H2O2 system and the Fenton-like mechanism for MO degradation in water was proposed and discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-170
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Colloid And Interface Science
StatePublished - Dec 15 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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