Honggang Fu and co-workers from Heilongjiang University, China, have come up with a straightforward approach for preparing Ag/Carbon composites based on the coordination interaction of the carbon source and the metal precursor. The acrylic acid type resin CD-180, a polymer processing abundant tunnels with exchangeable sodium ions, was selected as carbon source. The Ag/Carbon composites, where the Ag nanoparticles were well dispersed on the surface of carbon with tuned size, were obtained by exchange of sodium ions with silver ions to obtain resin-Ag+ composites followed by carbonization of them at certain temperature. The antibacterial assay showed that the composites possess high stability and good antibacterial properties that are determined largely by the Ag particle size.

In the strategy, the carbon precursor with different functionality can be selected, such as the glucose and starch with abundant hydroxyl, other ions-exchange resin with amido or carboxyl group, and castoff from farm produce that contains a plenty of cellulose. Based on the coordination interaction, different metal ions (Fe, Co, Ni, Ag, Au, Zn, Pd, W, Mo etc) can combine with the carbon precursor, and consequently, the carbon with different crystalline and carbon-based composites with different component can be prepared, including graphic carbon (GC) capsule, nanosheet, Ag/GC composites, WC/GC, MoC/GC and ZnO/GC etc. These materials are of promising in adsorption and separation, medicine, catalysis and optical-electric conversion areas.