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Nanomaterials 2019, 9(2), 205;

Microstructures and Photodegradation Performance toward Methylene Orange of Sputtering-Assisted Decoration of ZnFe2O4 Crystallites onto TiO2 Nanorods

Institute of Materials Engineering, National Taiwan Ocean University, Keelung 20224, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 January 2019 / Revised: 30 January 2019 / Accepted: 1 February 2019 / Published: 5 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nano‐photocatalytic Materials: Possibilities and Challenges)
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In this study, TiO2–ZnFe2O4 (ZFO) core-shell nanorods with various ZFO crystallite thicknesses were synthesized through sputtering-deposited ZFO thin films onto the surfaces of TiO2 nanorods. By coupling the ZFO narrow bandgap oxide with TiO2, an enhanced photodegradation efficiency of methylene orange under irradiation was achieved. Structural analyses revealed that ZFO crystallites fully covered the surfaces of the TiO2 nanorods. The sputtering-deposited ZFO crystallites on the head region of the composite nanorods were markedly thicker than those covering the lateral region of the composite nanorods. The coverage of ZFO crystallites on the TiO2 nanorods led to an improved light harvesting, a decrease in the hole–electron recombination rate, as well as the enhanced photodegradation activity of the TiO2–ZFO heterostructures under irradiation. The optimized ZFO thickness on the head region of the composite nanorods was approximately 43 nm on average and that at the lateral region of the composite nanorods was 15 nm, which exhibited superior photodegradation ability to methylene orange and retained a stable photodegradation efficiency of approximately 97% after cycling tests. The results herein demonstrate that sputtering deposition of ZFO crystallite with tunable thickness is a promising approach to designing TiO2–ZFO composite nanorods with various ZFO coverage sizes and to adjust their photodegradation ability toward organic dyes. View Full-Text
Keywords: sputtering; crystallite; microstructure; photodegradation sputtering; crystallite; microstructure; photodegradation

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Liang, Y.-C.; Liu, Y.-C. Microstructures and Photodegradation Performance toward Methylene Orange of Sputtering-Assisted Decoration of ZnFe2O4 Crystallites onto TiO2 Nanorods. Nanomaterials 2019, 9, 205.

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