Atmospheric pressure plasma technology is gaining increasing importance because it is a simple and tunable synthesis process for the production of metallic nanoparticles. In addition to the development of the power supply, improving the reactor is also one of the main strategies to enhance the utility. In this study, a simple reactor for the gas–liquid discharge plasma induced by argon gas was applied to synthesize silver nanoparticles from silver nitrate (AgNO3) in solution. An AC power supply with a peak voltage of 3.5 kV was used. The frequency and on-time were set to 50 kHz and 2.5 μs, respectively. The oscilloscope showed that the rising time was approximately 2 μs. The ethanol was used as the source for the reactive reducing agent. No more additional components existed in the solution during the discharge and neither of the electrodes was in contact with the treated solution. The temperature increased by 10 °C within 1min without a cooling system. Carbon was the main impurity and was expected to be produced from the decomposition of the organics under the plasma. The elevated temperature decreased the organic by-products by evaporation and could also decrease the production of carbon. Transmission electron microscopy showed that the spherical silver nanoparticles with a size of approximately 10 nm were synthesized with a crystal structure and that a low concentration of ethanol prefers the production of the mono-dispersed colloid.
This study was supported by an INHA University Research Grant.