Gamma irradiation of graphene quantum dots with ethylenediamine: Antioxidant for ion sensing

Aurelio Bonasera, Michelangelo Scopelliti, Dragana Jovanović, Gabriele Ciasca, Svetlana Jovanović, Milica Budimir, Olivera Marković, Slađana Dorontić, Biljana Todorović Marković

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Due to the low consumption of chemicals, the absence of toxic residual side products, the procedure simplicity and time-saving aspects, gamma irradiation offers advantages over the classical chemical protocols. We successfully employed gamma irradiation in order to introduce N-atoms in Graphene Quantum Dots (GQDs). By irradiating GQDs water dispersions in the presence of isopropyl alcohol and ethylenediamine, at doses of 25, 50 and 200 kGy, we attached amino groups onto GQDs in a single synthetic step. At the same time, a chemical reduction is achieved, too. Selected conditions induced incorporation of N-atoms within GDQs atomic lattice (around 3 at%), at all applied doses. Additionally, the C-atoms percentage was highly increased, from 63 to 79 at% or higher. The zeta potential of dots changed from -34.6 to +9.1 mV, due to the modification of functionalizing groups localized at the surface. Produced chemical changes lead to the desired alteration of the GQDs optical properties, such as an increased photoluminescence intensity, a higher photoluminescence quantum yields (from 2.07 to 18.40%) and a narrowing of the spectral features in the emission spectra. The ability of gamma-irradiated GQDs to quench free radical species was investigated and positively assessed; additionally, non-enzymatic optical detection of Cu(II) ions using GQDs as a sensor was studied and the detection limits are herein reported. These results suggest that GQDs can be potentially applied as smart photoluminescent sensors for metal cations.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
JournalCeramics International
Publication statusPublished - 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Gamma irradiation of graphene quantum dots with ethylenediamine: Antioxidant for ion sensing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this