Iron Oxide Fe3O4 Powder Properties And Preparation

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Iron oxide Fe3O4 is a substance inorganic with a chemical composition of Fe3O4. The magnetic black crystal is called magnetic iron dioxide.

Iron Oxide Fe3O4 Powder Properties

Ferric oxide cannot be dissolved in organic solvents, such as water or alkali solutions. Natural ferroferric dioxide is not soluble when mixed with acid and is readily oxidized into iron oxide (Fe2O3) by air in humid conditions.
The black Fe3O4 is an iron oxide with mixed valence, melting at 1597degC. It has a density of 5,18g/cm3. Fe3O4 Powder is insoluble with water, but soluble with acid solutions. At room temperature, it appears as magnetite. It has a high conductivity and strong submagnetism.

Fe3O4 exhibits anti-corrosion properties. In the case of bluing steel parts, also known as baking blue and blue-burning, an alkaline oxidizing liquid is used to produce a dark-blue or blue-black Fe3O4 coating on the surface. Used to improve corrosion resistance, aesthetics and gloss.

Iron Oxide Fe3O4 Powder Preparation

Traditional methods include microemulsification (solvothermal), precipitation, and the sol-gel method.

1. Precipitation methods
The precipitation process is widely used for the preparation of nanoparticles because it has low costs, a simple operation, and a high purity product. It can also be scaled up for large production. The most common precipitation methods are co-precipitation and hydrolytic precipitation. Ultrasonic precipitation is also used, as well as alkoxide hydrogenation and chelate breakdown.

2. Hydrothermal (solvothermal method)
Hydrothermal reaction (solvothermal reaction) is the general term used for chemical reactions which are carried out under high pressure and temperature in fluids, such as aqueous (organic) solvents or steam. The Fe3O4 obtained by the hydrothermal process has a particle size that is small and uniform, it does not need high-temperature calcination to prepare, and the multivalent ions can be doped.

3. Microemulsification method
The microemulsification technique is used to create an emulsion from two immiscible solutions under the influence of surfactants. In this method, amphiphilic molecule divides the continuous medium in tiny spaces that form a small reactor, where the reactants are able to react and form a solid. The microreactor limits the nucleation, growth of crystals, coalescence, agglomeration processes, so that nanoparticles are formed with a surfactant layer and have a specific structure and morphology.

4. Sol-gel method
The method is based on the hydrolysis of metal alkoxides and polymerization to produce a uniform solution of metal oxides and metal hydroxides. They are then concentrated into a clear gel. The gel is dried, and then heat-treated in order to obtain superfine powder.

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