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Origin of Activity and Stability Enhancement for Ag3PO4 Photocatalyst after Calcination

Key Laboratory for Advanced Technology in Environmental Protection of Jiangsu Province, Yancheng Institute of Technology, Yancheng 224051, China
School of Materials Engineering, Yancheng Institute of Technology, Yancheng 224051, China
Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center for Ecological Building Materials and Environmental Protection Equipments, Yancheng Institute of Technology, Yancheng 224051, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Greta Ricarda Patzke
Materials 2016, 9(12), 968;
Received: 30 September 2016 / Revised: 21 November 2016 / Accepted: 23 November 2016 / Published: 29 November 2016
PDF [12267 KB, uploaded 29 November 2016]


Pristine Ag3PO4 microspheres were synthesized by a co-precipitation method, followed by being calcined at different temperatures to obtain a series of calcined Ag3PO4 photocatalysts. This work aims to investigate the origin of activity and stability enhancement for Ag3PO4 photocatalyst after calcination based on the systematical analyses of the structures, morphologies, chemical states of elements, oxygen defects, optical absorption properties, separation and transfer of photogenerated electron-hole pairs, and active species. The results indicate that oxygen vacancies (VO˙˙) are created and metallic silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) are formed by the reaction of partial Ag+ in Ag3PO4 semiconductor with the thermally excited electrons from Ag3PO4 and then deposited on the surface of Ag3PO4 microspheres during the calcination process. Among the calcined Ag3PO4 samples, the Ag3PO4-200 sample exhibits the best photocatalytic activity and greatly enhanced photocatalytic stability for photodegradation of methylene blue (MB) solution under visible light irradiation. Oxygen vacancies play a significantly positive role in the enhancement of photocatalytic activity, while metallic Ag has a very important effect on improving the photocatalytic stability. Overall, the present work provides some powerful evidences and a deep understanding on the origin of activity and stability enhancement for the Ag3PO4 photocatalyst after calcination. View Full-Text
Keywords: Ag3PO4; photocatalysis; oxygen vacancies Ag3PO4; photocatalysis; oxygen vacancies

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Dong, P.; Hou, G.; Liu, C.; Zhang, X.; Tian, H.; Xu, F.; Xi, X.; Shao, R. Origin of Activity and Stability Enhancement for Ag3PO4 Photocatalyst after Calcination. Materials 2016, 9, 968.

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