Reducing Agents in Colloidal Nanoparticle Synthesis
CHAPTER 5: Gases
Published:14 May 2021
Special Collection: 2021 ebook collectionSeries: Nanoscience & Nanotechnology
D. Yi, B. Chaudret, and K. Soulantica, in Reducing Agents in Colloidal Nanoparticle Synthesis, ed. S. Mourdikoudis, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2021, pp. 97-129.
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Dihydrogen and carbon monoxide have been used for many years for the reduction of metals from their ores. These are the two gaseous reducing agents of choice for the synthesis of metal nanoparticles starting from molecular precursors. Their drawbacks (flammability and/or toxicity, use of high pressures) are counterbalanced by an easy removal of the unreacted agents after reaction, and by the fact that they leave no or few residues after use. Apart from acting as reducing agents, they can act as shape-directing agents and surface-active species, which influences their structural features and their physical and chemical properties. Last but not least, since during the nanoparticle formation they are present in a large excess, they can be involved in homogeneous or heterogeneous catalytic reactions that take place on soluble metal compounds (precursors, intermediate species) or on the surface of the nascent nanoparticles, respectively. These catalytic reactions may influence the nanoparticle formation process and nanoparticle properties.