Sustainable Utilization of Molasses Towards Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles for Colorimetric Heavy Metal Sensing and Catalytic Applications


A novel and facile synthetic route were evaluated towards the formation of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) by exploiting molasses as a biomaterial for the first time. The sugar molasses is a viscous material produced from sugarcane refining and the bio-components responsible for the formation of crystalline AgNPs validated by FTIR, UV–Vis spec., EDX, and XRD. The almost oval-shaped AgNPs with an average of 16 nm size were analyzed through DLS and TEM, respectively. Based on the significant characterization results, the AgNPs was employed for simple colorimetric detection of mercury (Hg2+) at low concentration. Here, we also described its catalytic efficacy for the reduction of 4-NP. The AgNPs found to have excellent efficacy in the detection of Hg2+ at 0.02 µM concentration. It also proved to have a prominent role in the reduction of 4-NP with 80% conversion efficiency even after 6 cycles. Combining highly selective and sensitive sensors as well as efficient and convenience catalysts have been proposed as detection and catalyzing nanomaterial for the environmental pollutants in water. The approach in this work is cost-effective and provides potential opportunities in environmental fields for a sustainable future.

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The authors thank the Pondicherry University for its Central instrumentation facility.

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Correspondence to Sarangapany Saran.

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Manjari, G., Parthiban, A. & Saran, S. Sustainable Utilization of Molasses Towards Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles for Colorimetric Heavy Metal Sensing and Catalytic Applications. J Clust Sci 31, 1137–1145 (2020).

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  • Bio-synthesis
  • Molasses
  • Ag nanoparticles
  • Catalysis
  • Sensors