Porous nickel and cobalt oxides were prepared using their alkoxides as inorganic precursors. The stabilization of the mesostructure is especially critical for divalent elements such as Ni and Co, which do not form any network structure, like silicates. The lack of a network-forming multivalent bond is the probable reason why no stable mesoporous oxides have been synthesized for divalent elements yet. Here we have reported our attempt to synthesize porous oxides of Ni and Co. Octadecylamine has been used as the organic structure-directing agent. The product obtained was put under solvent extraction and calcination at various temperatures to remove the surfactant, followed by characterization using XRD, TEM and BET measurements. The FT/IR and thermal analyses (TGA and DSC) were also carried out for supporting information, such as extent of removal of surfactant from the pores of the metal oxide. A relatively better surface area has been obtained for the Co oxide, but in Ni the surface area found is not as good. A possible reason for that has been discussed. The porous (solvent extracted) cobalt oxide has been used as a catalyst in the oxidation reaction of cyclohexane in mild conditions. The catalyst has shown relatively better conversion of cyclohexane into cyclohexanone and cyclohexanol than the nanostructured cobalt oxide catalyst of regular structure.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
D.N.S. is thankful to the Council of Higher Education of Israel, Jerusalem for providing financial support in form of a Post Doctoral Fellowship. The authors also thank Dr. Shifra Hochberg for editorial assistance.
- Cobalt oxide
- Nickel oxide
- Porous oxides