We have explored in situ synthesis of noble metal nanoparticles in ultrathin TiO2-gel films, in view of the increasing importance of such nanoparticle-containing thin films. The two-step procedure consists of ion exchange in the ultrathin matrix and subsequent reduction of metal ions to nanoparticles by low-temperature H2 plasma, by aqueous NaBH4, and by UV irradiation. Smooth and transparent ultrathin TiO2 films containing noble metal (Ag, Au, Pd, Pt) particles of 2-10 nm were readily obtained by this approach. The size and distribution of metal nanoparticles could be controlled by changing reaction conditions. The film thickness was precisely controlled by the cycle of film assembly. The low-temperature H2 plasma treatment, first used for preparation of noble metal nanoparticles, showed interesting advantages over chemical and photoinduced reductions in fabrication of nanoparticle-containing inorganic thin films.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Materials Science
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces