skip to main content


This content will become publicly available on August 4, 2019

Title: Improved ZnS nanoparticle properties through sequential NanoFermentation

Sequential NanoFermentation (SNF) is a novel process which entails sparging microbially produced gas containing H 2S from a primary reactor through a concentrated metal-acetate solution contained in a secondary reactor, thereby precipitating metallic sulfide nanoparticles (e.g., ZnS, CuS, or SnS). SNF holds an advantage over single reactor nanoparticle synthesis strategies, because it avoids exposing the microorganisms to high concentrations of toxic metal and sulfide ions. Also, by segregating the nanoparticle products from biological materials, SNF avoids coating nanoparticles with bioproducts that alter their desired properties. Herein, we report the properties of ZnS nanoparticles formed from SNF as compared with ones produced directly in a primary reactor (i.e., conventional NanoFermentation, or “CNF”), commercially available ZnS, and ZnS chemically synthesized by bubbling H 2S gas through a Zn-acetate solution. The ZnS nanoparticles produced by SNF provided improved optical properties due to their smaller crystallite size, smaller overall particle sizes, reduced biotic surface coatings, and reduced structural defects. Furthermore, SNF still maintained the advantages of NanoFermentation technology over chemical synthesis including scalability, reproducibility, and lower hazardous waste burden.
ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [2] ;  [3] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [2]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); United States Geological Survey, Reston, VA (United States)
  2. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  3. United States Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology; Journal ID: ISSN 0175-7598
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE); USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23); USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; Sparging H2S-bearing gas; Metal sulfide formation; Average crystallite size; Particle size; Optical propert
OSTI Identifier: