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Electrochemically Obtained TiO2/CuxOy Nanotube Arrays Presenting a Photocatalytic Response in Processes of Pollutants Degradation and Bacteria Inactivation in Aqueous Phase

1
Department of Environmental Technology, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Gdansk, 80-308 Gdansk, Poland
2
Department of Molecular Biotechnology, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Gdansk, 80-308 Gdansk, Poland
3
Faculty of Applied Physics and Mathematics, Gdansk University of Technology, 80-233 Gdansk, Poland
4
Institute of Physical Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, 01-224 Warsaw, Poland
5
Faculty of Chemistry, Nicolaus Copernicus University, 87-100 Torun, Poland
6
NanoBioMedical Centre, Adam Mickiewicz University, Umultowska 85, 61-614 Poznan, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Catalysts 2018, 8(6), 237; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal8060237
Received: 15 May 2018 / Revised: 1 June 2018 / Accepted: 2 June 2018 / Published: 5 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials for Environmental Purification and Energy Conversion)
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Abstract

TiO2/CuxOy nanotube (NT) arrays were synthesized using the anodization method in the presence of ethylene glycol and different parameters applied. The presence, morphology, and chemical character of the obtained structures was characterized using a variety of methods—SEM (scanning electron microscopy), XPS (X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy), XRD (X-ray crystallography), PL (photoluminescence), and EDX (energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy). A p-n mixed oxide heterojunction of Ti-Cu was created with a proved response to the visible light range and the stable form that were in contact with Ti. TiO2/CuxOy NTs presented the appearance of both Cu2O (mainly) and CuO components influencing the dimensions of the NTs (1.1–1.3 µm). Additionally, changes in voltage have been proven to affect the NTs’ length, which reached a value of 3.5 µm for Ti90Cu10_50V. Degradation of phenol in the aqueous phase was observed in 16% of Ti85Cu15_30V after 1 h of visible light irradiation (λ > 420 nm). Scavenger tests for phenol degradation process in presence of NT samples exposed the responsibility of superoxide radicals for degradation of organic compounds in Vis light region. Inactivation of bacteria strains Escherichia coli (E. coli), Bacillus subtilis (B. subtilis), and Clostridium sp. in presence of obtained TiO2/CuxOy NT photocatalysts, and Vis light has been studied showing a great improvement in inactivation efficiency with a response rate of 97% inactivation for E. coli and 98% for Clostridium sp. in 60 min. Evidently, TEM (transmission electron microscopy) images confirmed the bacteria cells’ damage. View Full-Text
Keywords: heterogeneous photocatalysis; TiO2/Cu2O nanotubes; anodization; nanomaterials fabrication; removal of microbiological pollutants heterogeneous photocatalysis; TiO2/Cu2O nanotubes; anodization; nanomaterials fabrication; removal of microbiological pollutants
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Kozak, M.; Mazierski, P.; Żebrowska, J.; Kobylański, M.; Klimczuk, T.; Lisowski, W.; Trykowski, G.; Nowaczyk, G.; Zaleska-Medynska, A. Electrochemically Obtained TiO2/CuxOy Nanotube Arrays Presenting a Photocatalytic Response in Processes of Pollutants Degradation and Bacteria Inactivation in Aqueous Phase. Catalysts 2018, 8, 237.

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