A simple hydrothermal route for the preparation of HgS nanoparticles and their photocatalytic activities

Rengaraj Selvaraj, Kezhen Qi, Salma M.Z. Al-Kindy, Mika Sillanpää, Younghun Kim, Cheuk Wai Tai

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26 Citations (Scopus)


HgS nanoparticles have been successfully prepared by a hydrothermal method using polyethylene glycol (PEG) as stabilizing agent and characterized by a variety of methods. Our experiments confirmed that the size of the HgS nanocrystals could be easily modified by tuning the chain length of PEG. X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) results for the nanoparticles revealed the hexagonal structure of the HgS, i.e. α-phase known as cinnabar. Morphological studies performed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed that the synthesized nanocrystals were nanoparticles. Furthermore, a rational mechanism of the formation and evolution of the products was proposed. The optical properties of HgS were investigated by diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (DRS), which indicated that the band gap of the nanoparticles is slightly decreased from 2.05 to 2.00 eV as the average particle size decreases from 55 to 35 nm. Furthermore, the photocatalytic activity studies of the particles demonstrated their excellent photocatalytic performance in rapidly degrading aqueous methylene blue dye solution under visible light irradiation. These results suggest that HgS nanoparticles will be an interesting candidate of photocatalyst working in visible light range. This journal is

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15371-15376
Number of pages6
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number30
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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