Journal of Sol-Gel Science and Technology

, Volume 51, Issue 2, pp 198–203 | Cite as

Preparation of ZnO nanoparticles by a surfactant-assisted complex sol–gel method using zinc nitrate

  • Y. L. Zhang
  • Y. Yang
  • J. H. Zhao
  • R. Q. Tan
  • P. Cui
  • W. J. Song
Original Paper


This paper presents a surfactant-assisted complex sol–gel method for the controlled preparation of Zinc Oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles using zinc nitrate and citric acid as starting material. ZnO nanoparticles with a pure wurtzite structure were obtained after calcination at 773 K. The effects of the citric acid concentration, the pH, and the surfactants on the average particle size and morphology of the ZnO nanoparticles were investigated using X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Well dispersed ZnO nanoparticles with a uniform size distribution were obtained using polyethylene glycol (PEG) 2000 as a surfactant. During sintering, the ZnO nanoparticles revealed isotropic growth below 1,373 K and anisotropic growth above 1,473 K. The particles’ activation energy was calculated to be 140 ± 6 kJ/mol between 773 and 1,373 K.


ZnO Nanoparticles Sol–gel Sintering 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Y. L. Zhang
    • 1
  • Y. Yang
    • 1
  • J. H. Zhao
    • 1
  • R. Q. Tan
    • 2
  • P. Cui
    • 1
  • W. J. Song
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Functional Materials and Nanodevices, Ningbo Institute of Material Technology and EngineeringChinese Academy of SciencesNingboPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.College of Information Science and EngineeringNingbo UniversityNingboPeople’s Republic of China

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