4 years ago

Preparation and photocatalytic activity of Nd-modified TiO2 photocatalysts: Insight into the excitation mechanism under visible light

Preparation and photocatalytic activity of Nd-modified TiO2 photocatalysts: Insight into the excitation mechanism under visible light
Titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles (NPs) modified with neodymium (Nd) in the range between 0.1 and 1.0mol% were prepared via the hydrothermal method. The samples obtained were characterized by diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (DRS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray fluorescence (EDX), Brunauer–Emmett–Teller (BET) method, X-ray powder diffraction analysis (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and photoluminescence spectroscopy (PL). The photocatalytic activity of the obtained samples was evaluated by photodegradation of phenol in aqueous solution under ultraviolet–visible (UV–Vis, λ>350nm) and visible (Vis, λ>420nm) irradiation. Experimental results showed that the photocatalysts exhibited high photocatalytic activity under Vis light. The sample showing the highest photoactivity under Vis irradiation was in the form of anatase; its surface area equalled 124m2/g (1.16 times larger than that of pristine TiO2). The average crystal size was 10.9nm, and it was modified with 0.1mol% of Nd3+ (28% of phenol was degraded after 60min of irradiation). The photocatalytic tests of phenol degradation in the presence of scavengers confirm that e and were responsible for the visible light degradation of organic compounds in the aqueous phase. Action spectra analysis revealed that although Nd-modified TiO2 could be excited under visible light in the range of 400–480nm, the up-conversion process is not responsible for the degradation of phenol under Vis irradiation.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0021951717302609

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