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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2012, Article ID 427172, 7 pages
Research Article

Urea-Based Synthesis of Zinc Oxide Nanostructures at Low Temperature

1Instituto de Química, Universidade Federal de Uberlândia, 38400-902 Uberlândia, MG, Brazil
2Departamento de Engenharia de Materiais, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, 59072-970 Natal, RN, Brazil
3Instituto de Química, Universidade Estadual Paulista, 14800-900 Araraquara, SP, Brazil
4Instituto de Física de São Carlos, Universidade de São Paulo, 13566-590 São Carlos, SP, Brazil

Received 17 December 2011; Revised 29 February 2012; Accepted 15 March 2012

Academic Editor: Laécio Santos Cavalcante

Copyright © 2012 J. Z. Marinho et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The preparation of nanometer-sized structures of zinc oxide (ZnO) from zinc acetate and urea as raw materials was performed using conventional water bath heating and a microwave hydrothermal (MH) method in an aqueous solution. The oxide formation is controlled by decomposition of the added urea in the sealed autoclave. The influence of urea and the synthesis method on the final product formation are discussed. Broadband photoluminescence (PL) behavior in visible-range spectra was observed with a maximum peak centered in the green region which was attributed to different defects and the structural changes involved with ZnO crystals which were produced during the nucleation process.