Plasma Chemistry and Plasma Processing, Vol.41, No.1, 433-445, 2021
Selective Synthesis of 2D Mesoporous CuO Agglomerates by Pulsed Spark Discharge in Water
Metal oxide nanomaterials, including copper oxide, have attracted great attention due to their unique physical and chemical properties that are dependent on particle size and morphology. In this study, we propose an alternative technique for the synthesis of 2D mesoporous CuO agglomerates that is both efficient and ecological. This technique is based on the use of pulsed spark discharges between copper electrodes immersed in deionized water. Detailed TEM analyses show that the synthesized CuO nanostructures are composed of elementary nanocrystals with sizes in the order of a few nanometers. Assessments of the effects of applied voltage (5 and 20 kV) and discharge pulse width (100 and 500 ns) demonstrate that the latter parameter influences the size and density of nanocrystals in a nanostructure. Moreover, voltage and pulse width may both be used to finely control the direct optical band gap energy of CuO nanostructures between 3.0 and 3.4 eV. The efficient and ecological technique developed in this study produces 2D mesoporous CuO agglomerates that can be readily used in other processes.