Authors:Sarah E. Smith, Zachary J. Huba, Fahad Almalki, J. R. Regalbuto, John Monnier and Everett E. Carpenter
Magnetic nanomaterials have many applications in the fields of catalysis, medicine, and environmental studies. An emerging synthetic method capable of large-scale production of nanomaterials is a continuous-flow microreactor. However, translating known conventional benchtop reactions to a continuous-flow system can be difficult; reaction parameters such as reaction time and viscosity of the solution are significant limitations in flow-based systems. In this study, nanocrystalline Cu—Ni and Cu—Co core—shell materials were successfully synthesized using a capillary microreactor in a one-step process. Ethanol was used as solvent, allowing for faster reaction times and reduced reaction solution viscosity, compared to similar bench top synthetic protocols. Both nanocomposites were tested for activity in Fischer—Tropsch and showed activity above 220 °C. This study shows that a continuous-flow capillary microreactor has the capabilities to make complex metallic nanomaterials at short reaction times with proper selection of reaction solvent systems.