Plasma-liquid electrochemistry: Rapid synthesis of colloidal metal nanoparticles by microplasma reduction of aqueous cations

Richmonds, Carolyn; Sankaran, R. Mohan
September 2008
Applied Physics Letters;9/29/2008, Vol. 93 Issue 13, p131501
Academic Journal
We demonstrate operation of an aqueous electrochemical cell with an atmospheric-pressure microplasma cathode and a solid metal anode for the rapid production of colloidal metal nanoparticles. Microplasmas are miniaturized versions of low-pressure glow discharges that operate nonthermally at high pressures (∼1 atm) and contain energetic electrons. Aqueous metal cations are directly reduced by electrons in the microplasma without the presence of a solid cathode or chemical reducing agents. Kinetic studies performed by UV-visible absorbance spectroscopy suggest that particle nucleation and growth are coupled to redox reactions initiated in the electrochemical cell through plasma-liquid interactions.


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