Scalable synthesis and functionalization of cobalt nanoparticles for versatile magnetic separation and metal adsorption

Pipsa Mattila, Hanna Heinonen, Kalle Loimula, Johanna Forsman, L.-S. Johansson, Unto Tapper, Riitta Mahlberg, Hans-Peter Hentze, Ari Auvinen, Jorma Jokiniemi (Corresponding Author), Roberto Milani (Corresponding Author)

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Magnetic cobalt nanoparticles coated with a thin carbon shell were produced by means of a scalable method based on hydrogen reduction synthesis. The presence of oxidized groups on the surface of the carbon shell enabled the reaction with alkoxysilanes bearing amino and thiol reactive functions under mild conditions, and therefore the formation of a thin functional silane layer which holds the potential for further modification in consideration of specific applications, e.g., in the separation and catalysis fields. The magnetic nanoparticles bearing surface thiol groups were also used in metal adsorption tests. These nanoparticles could efficiently adsorb not only gold from a chloride salt aqueous solution, but also several other metals when incubated in a thiocyanate-leached solution obtained from crushed printed circuit boards. The combination of a scalable production method with a simple and versatile surface modification strategy opens up a wide array of potential industrial applications in the fields of separation, sensing, and biomedical devices.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Nanoparticle Research
Publication statusPublished - 2014
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed



  • nanoparticles
  • carbon coatings
  • metal adsorption
  • surface modification

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