Particle size investigations of a multistep synthesis of PVA coated superparamagnetic nanoparticles
Nanoscaled particles showing superparamagnetic behavior have been intensively studied in the past years for various applications. Nevertheless, the lack of well-defined particles remains an important problem. One of the major challenges is still the large-scale synthesis of particles with a narrow size distribution. The aim of this work is to synthesize and characterize ferrofluids throughout a multistep synthesis. The iron oxide nanoparticles are first obtained by classical coprecipitation in water, followed by a thermochemical treatment and centrifugation to obtain well-dispersed primary nanoparticles. Finally polyvinyl alcohol is grafted onto the particles to ensure colloidal stability of the ferrofluid at neutral pH. The different synthesis steps and intermediate and side products are described. A model is proposed for the stabilization mechanism.