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Environ Technol. 2019 Jan 17:1-12. doi: 10.1080/09593330.2019.1567607. [Epub ahead of print]

Development of a new vacuum impregnation method at room atmosphere to produce silver-copper oxide nanoparticles on activated carbon for antibacterial applications.

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1
a Department of Chemical Engineering , State University of Maringá , Maringá , Brazil.

Abstract

A new impregnation method was tested in this study. Without a stabilizing agent, silver and copper metallic compounds were directly impregnated on activated carbon using vacuum impregnation followed by drying at 100°C and vacuum impregnation followed by thermal decomposition at 350°C in an ambient atmosphere. The effect of thermal decomposition on the structural, morphological, and textural characteristics of the modified nanomaterials was analysed by Brunauer-Emmett-Teller, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-Ray, and transmission electron microscopy. The characteristics of the produced materials were not altered. Silver and CuO nanoparticles were identified in the samples with average diameters ranging from 33.3-36.8 nm and 29.0-33.3 nm, respectively. The materials were tested for their antibacterial capacity and for their potential to leach Ag and Cu into water, thus analysing the effect of the thermal decomposition process on the impregnation process. The vacuum impregnation process followed by thermal decomposition produced the best results, with the resultant material reducing bacterial abundance by 5.31-6.61 log and leaching only low concentrations of metals into the water (Ag - 0.010-0.025 mg L-1 and Cu - 0.270-0.361 mg L-1). Samples produced without the thermal decomposition step reached bacterial reductions of 1.86-1.97 log and yielded higher concentrations of metals in the water (Ag - 0.051-0.086 mg L-1 and Cu - 0.819-0.894 mg L-1).

KEYWORDS:

; Characterization; metal nanoparticles; modification; thermal decomposition

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