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Nanomaterials 2019, 9(2), 163; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9020163

Evaluation of Solar-Driven Photocatalytic Activity of Thermal Treated TiO2 under Various Atmospheres

1
Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117576, Singapore
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Center for Nanofibers and Nanotechnology, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117575, Singapore
3
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 119260, Singapore
4
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 119260, Singapore
5
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117583, Singapore
6
Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), A*STAR (Agency for Science, Technology and Research), Singapore 138634, Singapore
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 December 2018 / Revised: 23 January 2019 / Accepted: 25 January 2019 / Published: 29 January 2019
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Abstract

In this report, the photocatalytic activity of P25 has been explored and the influence of thermal treatment under various atmospheres (air, vacuum and hydrogen) were discussed. The samples’ characteristics were disclosed by means of various instruments including X-ray diffraction (XRD), Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and UV–vis. This study also accentuates various states of the oxygen vacancy density formed inside the samples as well as the colour turning observed in treated P25 under various atmospheres. Produced coloured TiO2 samples were then exploited for their photocatalytic capability concerning photodegradation of methylene blue (MB) using air mass (AM) 1.5 G solar light irradiation. Our findings revealed that exceptional photocatalytic activity of P25 is related to the thermal treatment. Neither oxygen vacancy formation nor photocatalytic activity enhancement was observed in the air-treated sample. H2-treated samples have shown better photoactivity which even could be further improved by optimizing treatment conditions to achieve the advantages of the positive role of oxygen vacancy (O-vacancy at higher concentration than optimum acts as electron trapping sites). The chemical structure and stability of the samples were also studied. There was no sign of deteriorating of O2-vacancies inside the samples after 6 months. High stability of thermal treated samples in terms of both long and short-term time intervals is another significant feature of the produced photocatalyst. View Full-Text
Keywords: oxygen vacancy; thermal treatment; vacuum; hydrogen; degradation oxygen vacancy; thermal treatment; vacuum; hydrogen; degradation
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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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Katal, R.; Kholghi Eshkalak, S.; Masudy-panah, S.; Kosari, M.; Saeedikhani, M.; Zarinejad, M.; Ramakrishna, S. Evaluation of Solar-Driven Photocatalytic Activity of Thermal Treated TiO2 under Various Atmospheres. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 163.

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