Formation mechanism of monodispersed α-Fe2O3 particles in dilute FeCl3 solutions

Tadao Sugimoto, Atsushi Muramatsu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

150 Citations (Scopus)


Some ambiguity is still involved in the interpretation of the growth mechanism of monodispersed hematite (α-Fe2O3) particles in dilute FeCl3 solutions. Namely, there are two entirely different proposals on this issue, viz. aggregation of preformed primary particles of α-Fe2O3 itself and reprecipitation of the ionic species through dissolution of the preformed β-FeOOH particles. In order to resolve this problem, the formation process was followed in detail through TEM, Electron Diffraction, XRD, FT-IR, and ICP spectrometry along with quantitative analyses on seed effects. As a result, it has been concluded that the nuclei of the hematite particles are initially generated with the formation of β-FeOOH particles and that they are grown by deposition of the solute originally present in the solution phase and indirectly furnished from the β-FeOOH by dissolution. As the concentration of the solute is lowered by the growth of the hematite particles, they continue to grow with the solute provided mainly from the β-FeOOH in a steady-state of the dissolution of β-FeOOH and growth of α-Fe2O3. The basic formation mechanism is common to the ellipsoidal particles grown in the presence of phosphate ions and spherical particles in their absence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-638
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Colloid And Interface Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1996 Dec 25


  • aggregation
  • akaganeite
  • dissolution-recrystallization
  • ellipsoidal particles
  • formation mechanism
  • hematite
  • monodispersed particles
  • spindle-type particles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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