ZnFe1.96La0.04O4 nanocrystalline powders were synthesized by auto-combustion with the aid of glycine as fuel. The synthesized powders were subjected to heat treatment in air at constant temperatures (600-970°C) for a period of 2 h. The annealed powders were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transformation infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) and UV-Vis-NIR spectroscopy. The as-synthesized and annealed powders formed spongy porous network structure with voids and pores. All the powders were found to be single phase nanomaterial with cubic spinel crystal structure and the desired composition; however, they contained strains, dislocations and lattice distortions. Some of these strains and dislocations are relaxed as a function of annealing temperature. The powders displayed direct and indirect optical band gaps. The energies of these band gaps were found to vary as a function of the induced strains and dislocations. It is suggested that the energy of the optical band gap in lanthanum-doped zinc ferrite nanocrystalline powders can be varied as a function of induced strains if the initial preparation conditions and the following heat treatments are controlled.
- Normal spinel
- zinc lanthanum ferrite nanoparticles
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Condensed Matter Physics