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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 12 Issue 4 (2007) pp 263-266

Integration of Nanomaterials into the Undergraduate Chemistry Curriculum: Synthesis and Characterization of Gold Nanoparticles

Dan V. Goia, Daniel Andreescu, and Silvana Andreescu*

Department of Chemistry, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY 13699-5810,
Received July 8, 2006. Accepted June 4, 2007.

Published online: 4 August 2007

Abstract. Recent advances in nanotechnology have created the need for providing students with the knowledge and skills necessary for a wide range of career opportunities in nanoscience and related fields. Thus, integration into the educational process of appropriate teaching modules and laboratory experiments with focus on nanotechnology is a growing trend. This paper presents a laboratory experiment designed as an introduction to nanomaterials to be integrated into the undergraduate chemistry curriculum in the instrumental laboratories. We describe an easy, rapid and reproducible method for the synthesis of stable dispersions of uniform gold nanoparticles with an average particle diameter between 30 and 40 nm using tetrachloroauric acid and iso-ascorbic acid as reducing agent. UV–vis spectroscopy is used to follow the formation and stability of the colloidal dispersion and to optimize the experimental parameters. Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM) and dynamic light scattering (DLS) methods are used to determine the morphology, size, size distribution, and the electrokinetic properties of gold nanoparticles.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; analytic chemistry; instrumental; nanotechnology

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

Article in PDF format (252 KB) HTML format page numbers updated 9/15/07

Supporting Materials:

Background material, student handout and instructor notes, equipment, and reagent list and solutions are available in the supporting materials. (176 KB)

Issue date: August 4, 2007

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