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Synthesis, Growth and Characterization of Tunable Band Gap Nanostructured Copper(I) Oxide (Cu2O) Semiconductor

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The bulk nanostructured copper(I) oxide (Cu2O) has been successfully prepared by a new modified wet chemical route and thermal annealing of copper(II) oxide (CuO) pellets at reduced atmospheric pressure of 10−2 torr in the temperature range between 600–650 °C, which seems to be first of its kind to the best of our knowledge. The gross structure/phase identification of as synthesized copper oxides by powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) technique shows the formation of single phase of cupric oxide as well as cuprous oxide depending upon the annealing conditions i.e., temperature, pressure and time. The structural/micro-structural characteristics of copper oxides (Cu2O) explored by the scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopic (AFM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) reveals the formation of nanospheres (≈50 nm) and nanorods (≈100 to 200 nm) of copper(I) oxide. The surface characterization of the as-annealed Cu2O pellets at reduced atmospheric pressure of 10−2 torr at temperature of 650 °C by SEM have further shown the occurrence of curious growth characteristics resembling spiral like features. The band gap energy (E g) of these cuprous oxides, determined from the electrical resistivity (ρ) measurement by the four-probe method as a function of temperatures ranging from 300 K to 500 K is found to be varying between 2.2±0.5 eV. The room temperature (RT) photoluminescence (PL) spectra in both emission and excitation modes of nanostructured Cu2O shows two spectral emission at λ = 388.2 nm (E = 3.187 eV) in red band and λ = 753.15 nm (E = 1.64 eV) in orange band as well as strong and weak excitation peaks at λ = 242.70 nm (E = 5.09 eV) and λ = 223.71 nm (E = 5.53 eV) respectively. All the above peaks are the characteristic of cuprous oxides (Cu2O).
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2011

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  • Journal of Advanced Microscopy Research (JAMR) provides a forum for rapid dissemination of important developments in high-resolution microscopy techniques to image, characterize and analyze man-made and natural samples; to study physicochemical phenomena such as abrasion, adhesion, corrosion and friction; to perform micro and nanofabrication, lithography, patterning, micro and nanomanipulation; theory and modeling, as well as their applications in all areas of science, engineering, and medicine.
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