, 14:1248,
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Date: 30 Oct 2012

Controlled oxidation of graphite to graphene oxide with novel oxidants in a bulk scale

Abstract

In this study, a novel method of graphite chemical exfoliation to create graphene oxide (GO) is reported. Here, new oxidants were examined: a mixture of perchloric and nitric acids and potassium chromate. Furthermore, an effect of oxidation time, temperature of oxidation, and ultrasonication on graphite exfoliation degree was investigated. The obtained GOs were next reduced with glucose, used as a reducing agent. Detailed analysis of the materials indicated that when graphite was oxidized for 24 h at 50 °C, 5-layered graphene was prepared. An effect of sonication process was also examined, and it was found to enhance the exfoliation to bilayer graphene. Furthermore, when time and temperature were increased to 48 h and 100 °C, respectively, graphite was exfoliated to single-layer graphene. Therefore, it is believed that the proposed route can be applied for the preparation of graphene or few-layered graphene with defined number of layers upon the process parameters optimization and in a bulk scale. The materials were characterized with atomic force microscopy, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction.