This work reports the template-free fabrication of mesoporous Al2O3 nanospheres with greatly enhanced textural characteristics through a newly developed post-synthesis “water-ethanol” treatment of aluminium glycerate nanospheres followed by high temperature calcination. The proposed “water-ethanol” treatment is highly advantageous as the resulting mesoporous Al2O3 nanospheres exhibit 2–4 times higher surface area (up to 251 m2 g−1), narrower pore size distribution, and significantly lower crystallization temperature than those obtained without any post-synthesis treatment. To demonstrate the generality of the proposed strategy, a nearly identical post-synthesis “water treatment” method is successfully used to prepare mesoporous monometallic (e.g., manganese oxide (MnO2)) and bimetallic oxide (e.g., CuCo2O4 and MnCo2O4) nanospheres assembled of nanosheets or nanoplates with highly enhanced textural characteristics from the corresponding monometallic and bimetallic glycerate nanospheres, respectively. When evaluated as molybdenum (Mo) adsorbents for potential use in molybdenum-99/technetium-99m (99Mo/99mTc) generators, the treated mesoporous Al2O3 nanospheres display higher molybdenum adsorption performance than non-treated Al2O3 nanospheres and commercial Al2O3, thereby suggesting the effectiveness of the proposed strategy for improving the functional performance of oxide materials. It is expected that the proposed method can be utilized to prepare other mesoporous metal oxides with enhanced textural characteristics and functional performance.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
I.S. gratefully acknowledges the Program for Research and Innovation in Science and Technology (RISET-Pro) scholarship, provided by the Ministry for Research, Technology and Higher Education, Republic of Indonesia. Y.V.K. thanks the Japan Society for Promotion of Science (JSPS) for providing the standard postdoctoral fellowship. The authors also thank Dr. Toshiaki Takei of Namiki Foundry at NIMS for the assistance with the TEM imaging. This work was supported by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow FT150100479 and JSPS KAKENHI (Grant Nos. 17H05393, 17K19044, and 17H04256). This work was partly supported by the International Energy Joint R&D Program of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), granted financial resource from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, Republic of Korea (No. 20168510011350). The authors would like to thank New Innovative Technology (NIT) for helpful suggestions and discussions on materials fabrication.
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)