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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2013, Article ID 137275, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/137275
Research Article

Synthesis and Magnetic Properties of a Superparamagnetic Nanocomposite “Pectin-Magnetite Nanocomposite”

1Institute of Physics, Department of Chemical Physics and Material Science, University of Augsburg, 86153 Augsburg, Germany
2Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Buea, P.O. Box 63, Buea, Cameroon
3Department of Chemistry, Rhodes University, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa

Received 14 May 2013; Revised 27 July 2013; Accepted 12 August 2013

Academic Editor: Do Kim

Copyright © 2013 Jude Namanga 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.

Abstract

Magnetic nanocomposites composed of superparamagnetic magnetite nanoparticles in a pectin matrix were synthesized by an in situ coprecipitation method. The pectin matrix acted as a stabilizer and size control host for the magnetite nanoparticles (MNPs) ensuring particle size homogeneity. The effects of the different reactant ratios and nanocomposite drying conditions on the magnetic properties were investigated. The nanocomposites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, and superconducting quantum interference device magnetometer (SQUID). Superparamagnetic magnetite nanoparticles with mean diameters of 9 and 13 nm were obtained, and the freeze-dried nanocomposites had a saturation magnetization of 54 and 53 emu/g, respectively.