Origin of Magnetism in Hydrothermally Aged 2-Line Ferrihydrite Suspensions

Date

2017

Authors

Cao, Liang
Jiang, Zhaoxia
Du, Yong-Hua
Yin, Xin-Mao
Xi, Shi-Bo
Wen, Wen
Roberts, Andrew P.
Wee, Andrew
Xiong, Yi-Min
Liu, Qing-Song

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Volume Title

Publisher

American Chemical Society

Abstract

As an iron oxyhydroxide, nanosized ferrihydrite (Fh) is important in Earth science, biology, and industrial applications. However, its basic structure and origin of its magnetism have long been debated. We integrate synchrotron-based techniques to explore the chemical structures of 2-line ferrihydrite and to determine the origin of its magnetism during hydrothermal aging in air. Our results demonstrate that both the magnetism and X-ray magnetic circular dichroism (XMCD) signal of 2-line ferrihydrite are enhanced with aging time, and that XMCD spectral patterns resemble that of maghemite (γ-Fe2O3) rather than magnetite (Fe3O4). Fe L-edge and K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) further indicate formation of both maghemite and hematite (α-Fe2O3) with increasing concentrations with longer hydrothermal aging time. Thus, magnetic enhancement with longer hydrothermal aging time is attributed to increasing maghemite concentration instead of a magnetically ordered ferrihydrite as previously reported. Moreover, L-edge and K-edge XAS spectra with different probing depths yield different ratios of these Fe oxides, which suggest the formation of a core (ferrihydrite-rich)-shell (with a mixture of both allotropes; α-Fe2O3 and γ-Fe2O3) structure during hydrothermal aging. Our results provide insights into the chemical evolution of 2-line ferrihydrite that reveal unambiguously the origin of its magnetism.

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Citation

Source

Environmental Science and Technology

Type

Journal article

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DOI

10.1021/acs.est.6b04716

Restricted until

2099-12-31