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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 5794312, 10 pages
Research Article

Synthesis of Carbon Nanofibers with Maghemite via a Modified Sol-Gel Technique

1Engineering Institute, Autonomous University of Baja California, 21100 Mexicali, BC, Mexico
2Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Metalúrgicas (CENIM), CSIC, Avda. Gregorio del Amo 8, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Correspondence should be addressed to Benjamín Valdez Salas

Received 11 July 2017; Accepted 31 July 2017; Published 9 November 2017

Academic Editor: Andrew R. Barron

Copyright © 2017 Nicolás Díaz Silva 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.


Carbon nanohybrid material (CNF/γ-Fe2O3) was obtained via a modified sol-gel technique consisting of two steps: functionalization of carbon nanofibers (CNF) in H2SO4/HNO3 followed by synthesis using Fe(NO3)39H2O. As a result, the iron content of the CNF/γ-Fe2O3 was increased by more than twice from about 40% to about 87% mass percent, compared to the pristine CNF and oxidized CNF specimens, as proved by energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence. Scanning electron microscopy images exhibited “cumulus” on the CNF/γ-Fe2O3 specimen surface, which showed the highest iron mass percentage, proved by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Transmission electron microscopy images confirmed attachment of γ-Fe2O3 cumulus to the inner and outer surfaces of the CNF walls after synthesis. The characteristic peaks of Fe 2p3/2 and Fe 2p1/2 appeared in the XPS spectra obtained on CNF/γ-Fe2O3. In addition, X-ray diffraction (XRD) results indicated formation of γ-Fe2O3 during the synthesis process. The Raman spectrum of the CNF/γ-Fe2O3 sample displays peaks with positions close to characteristic peaks of highly crystalline and monodisperse maghemite nanocrystallites. The synthesis of CNF/γ-Fe2O3 leads to an increase in the hydrophilicity of CNF and magnetic properties at room temperature.