Nanocrystalline TiO2 based films onto fibers for photocatalytic degradation of organic dye in aqueous solution
Nanocrystalline titania (TiO2) synthesized via sol–gel, by using an alkoxide precursor were deposited onto commercially available silica and alumina fibers, namely E-Glass and Nextel 650, respectively. Different processing conditions and material preparation parameters, such as amount of TiO2, film composition and annealing temperature were tested in order to obtain nanocrystalline TiO2 with different morphological and structural characteristics. The materials were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and the Brunauer, Emmett, and Teller (BET) surface area measurements. The photocatalytic activity of the obtained coated fibers was investigated by monitoring the degradation of a model molecule, an azo dye (Methyl Red), under UV irradiation in aqueous solution. The detected photocatalytic performance of the sol–gel derived nanocrystalline TiO2 was explained on the basis of mechanism associated to the photocatalytic decomposition of organic molecules using semiconductor oxides and accounted for the structural and morphological characteristics of the TiO2 based coating. The materials with the most suited characteristics for photocatalysis were used to scale up the deposition onto a larger sample of fiber and then tested in a photocatalytic reactor. A commercially available TiO2 standard material (TiO2 P25 Degussa) was used as reference, in order to ultimately assess the viability of the coating process for real application.
Graphical abstractFigure optionsDownload full-size imageDownload as PowerPoint slideHighlights► Nanosize TiO2 was deposited onto commercially available silica and alumina fibers. ► Supported catalysts showed high photocatalytic activity. ► Performance of obtained coated fibers was compared with that of suspended P25 TiO2.
Journal: Applied Catalysis B: Environmental - Volumes 121–122, 13 June 2012, Pages 190–197