CuFe2O4 have been widely investigated and used in variety of applications such as magnetic material, anode material, catalyst, and so on, because of their attractive magnetic, electronic, thermal and catalytic properties.
Among methods to synthesize nanoferrites, the combustion synthesis is an easy, safe, rapid and economic method used to synthesise various oxides or to prepare multi-component ceramics. The process is based on a rapid redox reaction between a fuel (urea, citric acid, glycine, etc.) and oxidisers (generally metal nitrates), which starts under a moderated heating. This exothermic reaction can produce some fumes and/or a flame.
Applying surfactants, which are composed from molecules along with sol–gel method can improve the properties of the synthesized powders. In the presence of surfactant, surface tension of solution is reduced and this facilitates nucleation and formation of the new phases. The formation of reverse micelles in gel can be effective in controlling the particles growth and the distance between particles. It has been found that the surfactant prevents the agglomeration of the ferrite nanoparticles.
In this present study, the sol–gel auto-combustion method is applied for synthesizing the CuFe2O4/CTAB and CuFe2O4/SDS nanocomposite, using nickel nitrate, iron nitrate, ammonia, citric acid and CTAB and SDS as surfactant. The nanoparticles were characterized by XRD, SEM and FT-IR. Powder XRD analysis and FT-IR spectroscopy confirmed formation of CuFe2O4 spinel phase. SEM images show the effect of surfactants on morphology of nanoparticles.