The surfaces of monodisperse polystyrene (PS) colloids have been modified with hydroxyl groups by means of plasma treatment technique. By templating against these surface-modified PS colloids, the germania coating PS composite microspheres were prepared via a sol-gel process. After removal of PS cores, the resulting composite microspheres converted into hollow germania microspheres with mesoporous structure. The shell thickness of these hollow spheres can be controlled by varying the concentration of germania precursor. BET results indicated that the hollow germania microspheres shell exhibits slightly broader pore size distribution than that of corresponding composite one owing to the swelling effects of the PS core during the etching process. In addition, the as-prepared germania exhibits amorphous phase which can be converted into crystalline phase by calcination treatment. It is worthy to noting that this fabrication protocol demonstrated a facile, low-cost and environment-benign way for fabricating hollow germania structures by templating method. Moreover, this protocol is not limit to germania; it also could be used to create the other hollow inorganic oxides spheres.
Li, H., C. S. Ha, I. Kim
J. Sol-Gel Sci. Technol.