Nanocrystalline ZrN has been successfully prepared via benzene-thermal reac
tion of ZrCl4 and NaN3 at 350-380 degrees C. X-ray powder diffraction patte
rns indicated that the crystallinity of ZrN was considerably high and the c
ell constant was a = 4.567 Angstrom. Transmission electron microscopy image
s showed the powders consist of uniform spherical particles with a narrow p
article-size distribution (10-20 nm). The role benzene-solvent played in th
e formation of nanocrystalline ZrN was discussed.