Development of visible light sensitive titania photocatalysts by combined nitrogen and silver doping

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Journal Article
Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry, 2011, 17 (2), pp. 358 - 363
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In this study we present the effects of non-metal (nitrogen) and metal/non-metal (silver/nitrogen) dopants on titanium dioxide (TiO2) in synthesising visible-light reactive photocatalysts. Nanopowders of TiO2-N and TiO2-N-Ag were synthesised using a simple procedure at room temperature. For nitrogen doping, a dispersion of Degussa P-25 was treated with ammonium hydroxide. The obtained modified catalyst was further treated with silver nitrate powder to facilitate silver-nitrogen co-doping. The produced catalysts were characterised using X-ray diffraction, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and specific surface area measurements. Scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive X-ray and transmission electron microscopy were adapted to detect changes in the morphology and in the chemical composition of synthesised catalysts. The results show that both the morphology and appearance of catalysts were modified to yield nanopowders of yellowish color and relatively high specific surface area. Methylene blue (MB) dye was used as a model aquatic contaminant in 23mg/L concentration to study the performance of these novel photocatalysts in an aerobic mixed batch reactor system under white light irradiation. Both nitrogen and nitrogen-silver co-doping lead to visible light sensitivity and the new catalysts showed remarkable activities in the decolorisation of MB. © 2011 The Korean Society of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry.
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