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Heterogeneous photo-catalysis is an advanced oxidation process (PAO), which has been the subject of numerous studies and applications, particularly using the commercial oxide of TiO2 (P25, Evonik). Zinc oxide (ZnO) has often been considered a valid alternative to TiO2 due to its good opto-electronic, catalytic and photochemical characteristics along with its low cost. In order to improve the photocatalytic performance of ZnO for practical applications, various types of synthetic approaches have been developed, including, among others, the hydrothermal / solvothermal growth method, sol-gel method, ultrasonic assisted method, deposition chemistry in vapor phase, etc. with the aim of preparing ZnO particles with different sizes and morphologies. However, all of these methods require relatively severe reaction conditions such as high temperature, sophisticated techniques, high purity of gases, adjustable gas flow, expensive raw materials, etc. Therefore, it is important to find a simple and cost-effective method for the synthesis of crystalline nano-particles of ZnO. For this reason, in the present work, the ZnO has been synthesized by three different procedures: conventional aqueous precipitation method, hydrothermal method (H) and microwave assisted method (MW). In all three processes, the same material is obtained, hydrocincite [Zn5(CO3) 2(OH)6], which evolves to crystalline ZnO after calcination thermal treatments. We investigated the effect of the calcination temperature, at the same time (2 h), on the optical, textural and structural properties. Photo-catalytic studies were performed using two selected substrates, Methyl Orange and Phenol, as toxic model substrates (one colorant and the other transparent). The catalysts prepared were characterized by several techniques: DRX, SBET, FE-SEM, TEM and UV-Vis (in diffuse reflectance mode).From the results of XRD, it has been possible to establish that a minimum difference between the relative intensities of exposed faces (I100 and I002) is a crucial factor to obtain good photocatalytic properties. This minimum difference is achieved, in our cases by thermal treatments of calcination at 400ºC, 2 h. When this temperature is chosen, there is no appreciable variation between the photocatalytic activities of the oxides of zinc obtained by the three processes, and there are small differences depending on the nature of the substrate chosen, which can be attributed to the textural differences between the oxides. In any case, the obtained zinc oxides show, for each substrate, photo-catalytic activities in the UV that are superior to those presented by the widely used commercial oxide TiO2 (P25) used as reference.

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The study includes the development of the photocatalyst and of the process conditions.

The Essential Facts Of Tio2 Photocatalysis Thesis

The term photocatalysis is often used to refer to processes carried out in the presence of photoactive materials and aimed toward wastewater decontamination or water splitting for the generation of hydrogen as a fuel. However, the idea that photocatalysis can provide an alternative to more conventional synthetic pathways has been gradually emerging [1-13]. In its broadest sense, photocatalysis for synthetic purposes concerns the use of light to induce chemical transformations of organic or inorganic substrates that are transparent in the wavelength range employed. The radiation is absorbed by a photocatalyst, whose electronically excited states are able to trigger the chemical reactions of interest. The overall process can be considered photocatalytic when i) the photoactive species is regenerated in its initial state at the end of a reaction cycle, just as happens in thermal catalysis; ii) the photocatalyst is consumed less than in stoichiometric amounts, while light is a stoichiometric reagent. Selectivity is a key issue in photocatalytic processes aimed at the

tio2 photocatalysis thesis - Universo Online

Diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS) was used to study illuminated TiO2 surfaces under both vacuum conditions and in the presence of organic molecules (decane and methanol). In the presence of a hole scavenger, electrons are trapped at Ti(III)-OH sites, and a free electrons are generated. These free electrons are seen to decay by either exposure to oxygen or to heat; in the case of heating, reinjection of holes into the lattice by loss of sorbed hole scavenger leads to a decrease in Ti(III)-OH centers. Decane adsorption experiments lend support to the theory that removal of hydrocarbon contaminants is responsible for superhydrophilic TiO2 surfaces. Oxidiation of methanol led to formation of surface bound formic acid.

Titanium dioxide was then doped with nitrogen atoms via high temperature treatment with ammonia, toward the goal of developing a catalyst capable of using visible light to degrade organic substrates. Catalyst efficiency was tested by monitoring formate degradation to CO2 and H2O under visible light using ion chromatography. However, reduced photocatalytic activity in the UV region, as well as a strong synthesis temperature dependence on catalytic efficiency, was observed. The N-doped TiO2 surface was probed with diffuse infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS), leading us to conclude that Ti-N triple bond defect sites control visible light activity and lead to an apparent reduction in overall crystallinity.

Visible light photocatalytic H2 production was then studied. Microporous and mesoporous silicas (Zeolite-Y, Zeolite-L, SBA-15) and niobium oxides (KNbO3, K4Nb6O17) were combined with nanoparticulate CdS particles and Ni to form hybrid photocatalysts that produced H2 from water/ethanol solutions under visible light irradiation. Silica cavity size, which determines CdS particle size, and photocatalytic activity were found to be correlated. Photocatalytic activity was seen to decrease under acidic or basic conditions with an associated negative ionic strength effect. In the niobate catalysts, Ni doping was shown to lead to higher-energy Nb-O bonding states and to compete with Cd for ion exchange sites. XPS analysis indicated loss of Cd2+ ion from the metal oxide supports occured during the course of the photochemical reaction, with apparent retention of bound CdS for most catalysts.

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phd for photocatalysis - Grant-Scholarship

This study aimed to explore the photocatalytic ability of the novel nanomaterial membrane in degrading the antibiotic sulfamethoxazole (SMX) under solar light.

Another advanced technology, heterogeneous photocatalysis, was used in this study to improve the quality of treated wastewater.

Environmental Application of Photocatalysis

Biofilms are three-dimensional structures that contains billions of genetically identical bacteria submerged in a self-produced extracellular matrix, which protect bacteria from antibiotics and the human immunological defenses. More than 85 % of chronic and/or recurrent human infections are linked to bacterial biofilms. In addition, spore-forming pathogenic bacteria represent an additional community threat because of their intrinsic refractory behavior against antibiotics, phagocytes and their easy utilization in bioterrorist attacks. Therefore, every day the available microbicide arsenal against biofilms and spores becomes scarcer. Accordingly, nano-material biotechnology emerges as a promising alternative for reducing the detrimental effects of microbial-related diseases. Here we describe the development of novel nanostructured coating systems with improved photocatalytic and antibacterial activities. These systems comprise, in one case, layers of SiO2 followed by layers of mesoporous or dense TiO2-anatase, and doping with silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs). In the other case, we developed Copper NPs and its oxides by a chemical method based on a bottom up approach and its stabilization using aminosilanes as surface modifiers. The activity of CuNPs and AgNPs (MNPs) was measured against spores and vegetative (planktonic and sessile) forms of the relevant human pathogens Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (etiological agent of Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome), Listeria monocytogenes (etiological agent of septic abortion), Bacillus anthracis (etiological agent of Anthrax), Clostridium perfringens (etiological agent of food-associated diarrhea and Gas Gangrene), cystic-fibrosis related Pseudomona aeruginosa and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus ( etiological agent of sepsis and myocardiopathies). The planktonic and sessile growth (measured as the final cellular yield at 600 nm and crystal violet staining, respectively) of each pathogen, as well as the sporocide effect on C. perfringens and B. anthracis spores, was very significant at submillimolar concentrations of MNPs (95 % of vegetative growth inhibition and sporocide effect, p