Manganese oxide octahedral molecular sieves: Synthesis, self-assembly, control over morphologies and tunnel structure

Date of Completion

January 2007


Engineering, Materials Science




Direct architecture of complex nanostructures is desirable and still remains a challenge in areas of materials science. Due to their size-, shape-dependent electronic and optical properties, much effort has been made to control morphologies of transition metal oxide nanoparticles and to organize them into complicated 3D structures using templates. In particular, manganese oxides have attracted much attention because they have extensive applications in many chemical processes due to their porous structures, acidity, ionexchange, separation, catalysis, and energy storage in secondary batteries. Using organic templates such as trimethylamine (TMA), manganese oxides have been successfully organized into macroscopic rings and helices via sol-gel processes. However, the methods mentioned above all need further purification, so impurities will be avoided. Subsequent procedures are needed to obtain pure products. Thus facile and template-free methods are highly desired for synthesis of manganese oxide nanaoparticles with complex 3D structures. ^ Manganese oxide octahedral molecular sieves (OMS) are a class of microporous transition metallic oxides with various kinds of tunnel structures that can be synthesized via controlling synthetic conditions such as temperature, concentration, pH, and cations. Manganese oxide molecular sieves are semiconducting mixed-valence catalysts that utilize electron transport to catalyze reactions such as selective oxidation of alcohols. OMS has distinct advantages over aluminosilicate molecular sieve materials for applications in catalysis due to the mixed valence character. The synthesis of manganese oxide OMS materials will be much more complicated than those of main group metallic oxides because of different coordination numbers and oxidation states. OMS-type materials with desirable morphologies formed under mild synthetic conditions are highly desirable. Herein, we report a template-free, low temperature preparation of porous cryptomelane-type manganese oxide (OMS-2) 3D nanostructures. ^ The objectives of this research include exploration of new methods to oxidize Mn2+ in aqueous solution either under low-temperature reflux or hydrothermal conditions. Various oxidants were used with precisely controlled synthetic parameters such as temperature, concentrations of starting materials, pH, and kinds of templates. ^ A variety of techniques including powder X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) scanning electron microscopy are used to investigate the structures of synthesized materials. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy are utilized to studying the morphology and topography. The surface areas of the materials is measured by the BET method. Inductively coupled argon plasma atomic emission spectrometer (ICP-AES) are utilized to investigate the chemical composition of the materials. Thermal-stability of the materials is investigated by thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). ^ The objectives of this research includes exploring new synthetic approach such as oxidation of Mn2+ in aqueous solution by selecting suitable oxidants so as to control redox potential, varying pH of reaction systems, and controlling tunnel structures using hard templates (cations) under hydrothermal conditions. ^