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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Enhanced Photocatalytic Activity of Au/TiO2 Nanoparticles against Ciprofloxacin

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Department of Physics/Centre of Biological Engineering, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
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IB-S—Institute for Research and Innovation on Bio-Sustainability, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
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Institute for Materials Science and Max Bergmann Center of Biomaterials, Technische Universität Dresden Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
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Department of Chemical Engineering, Hanoi University of Science and Technology, Hanoi 10000, Vietnam
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Department of Chemical Engineering, Aragon Institute of Nanoscience (INA), University of Zaragoza, Campus Río Ebro-Edificio I+D, C/Poeta Mariano Esquillor S/N, 50018 Zaragoza, Spain
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Networking Research Centre on Bioengineering, Biomaterials and Nanomedicine, Centro de Investigacion Biomédica en Red—Bioengenharía, Biomateriales e Nanomedicina, 28029 Madrid, Spain
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Dresden Center for Computational Materials Science, Technische Universität Dresden Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
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Center for Advancing Electronics Dresden, Technische Universität Dresden Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
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Centro de Investigação em Materiais Cerâmicos e Compósitos, Aveiro Institute of Materials, Department of Chemistry, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
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BCMaterials, Basque Center for Materials, Applications, and Nanostructures, Universidad del País Basco—Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea, Science Park, 48940 Leioa, Spain
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IKERBASQUE, Basque Foundation for Science, 48013 Bilbao, Spain
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Catalysts 2020, 10(2), 234; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal10020234 (registering DOI)
Received: 14 January 2020 / Revised: 9 February 2020 / Accepted: 11 February 2020 / Published: 15 February 2020
In the last decades, photocatalysis has arisen as a solution to degrade emerging pollutants such as antibiotics. However, the reduced photoactivation of TiO2 under visible radiation constitutes a major drawback because 95% of sunlight radiation is not being used in this process. Thus, it is critical to modify TiO2 nanoparticles to improve the ability to absorb visible radiation from sunlight. This work reports on the synthesis of TiO2 nanoparticles decorated with gold (Au) nanoparticles by deposition-precipitation method for enhanced photocatalytic activity. The produced nanocomposites absorb 40% to 55% more radiation in the visible range than pristine TiO2, the best results being obtained for the synthesis performed at 25 °C and with Au loading of 0.05 to 0.1 wt. %. Experimental tests yielded a higher photocatalytic degradation of 91% and 49% of ciprofloxacin (5 mg/L) under UV and visible radiation, correspondingly. Computational modeling supports the experimental results, showing the ability of Au to bind TiO2 anatase surfaces, the relevant role of Au transferring electrons, and the high affinity of ciprofloxacin to both Au and TiO2 surfaces. Hence, the present work represents a reliable approach to produce efficient photocatalytic materials and an overall contribution in the development of high-performance Au/TiO2 photocatalytic nanostructures through the optimization of the synthesis parameters, photocatalytic conditions, and computational modeling. View Full-Text
Keywords: Au-TiO2; antibiotics; emergent contaminants; nanocatalyst; photocatalysis; GFN-xTB Au-TiO2; antibiotics; emergent contaminants; nanocatalyst; photocatalysis; GFN-xTB
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MDPI and ACS Style

Martins, P.; Kappert, S.; Nga Le, H.; Sebastian, V.; Kühn, K.; Alves, M.; Pereira, L.; Cuniberti, G.; Melle-Franco, M.; Lanceros-Méndez, S. Enhanced Photocatalytic Activity of Au/TiO2 Nanoparticles against Ciprofloxacin. Catalysts 2020, 10, 234.

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