nano-structures; iron-сopper nanocomposites; synthetic humic substances


A simple and materially beneficial method for the synthesis of a mixed iron-copper nanocomposite in a carbon matrix from synthetic humic substances has been developed. The method is based on the pyrolysis of mixture of ferum and cuprum humates in a hydrogen atmosphere at 800-900 °C. The characterization of the iron-copper nanocomposite was carried out by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, X-ray fluorescence analysis, and voltammetric method. It was found that the synthesized nanocomposite is metal formations up to 700-1000 nm in size, located on the surface of a carbon matrix, which, according to X-ray diffraction data, is amorphous. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy showed that the spherical formations are composed mainly of copper. No peaks of the bcc iron phase were found in the diffraction pattern of the sample. However, the data of X-ray  fluorescence spectroscopy confirm the presence of both elements in the composition of the composite, and the execute voltammetric study convincingly proves that these elements are there in a zero-valent state. It was found that the iron-copper nanocomposite is characterized by good electrical conductivity, but the absence of ferromagnetic properties due to the fact that iron forms a common fcc crystal lattice with copper.


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