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In this study we evaluated an efficient microwave-solvothermal method to synthesize effective visible-light photocatalists based on the use of anatase TiO2 nanorods. The nanocrystals were obtained by hydrolysis of titanium tetraisopropoxide (TTIP) in the presence of benzyl alcohol at 210 C. The method was effective and produced TiO2 nanocrystals in the anatase phase with a rapid kinetics of crystallization. A significant size control was obtained tuning the TTIP to oleic acid molar ratio. High volumetric yield and reduced energy costs were achieved. All synthesized TiO2 nanocrystals showed a high photoactivity in comparison with commercial P25 titania, as they could degrade faster and completely Rhodamine B dye in solution under visible-light irradiation. The nanocrystals were characterized in detail by X-ray diffraction, low-and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, microRaman and FT-IR spectroscopy. A distorted anatase structure due to oxygen vacancies was identified as being at the origin of the introduction of new energy levels into the anatase band gap, which probably promoted the visible-light photoactivity.
Publication date: 
1 Jan 2014

Claudia Carlucci, Hua Xu, Barbara Federica Scremin, Cinzia Giannini, Teresa Sibillano, Elvio Carlino, Valeria Videtta, Giuseppe Gigli, Giuseppe Ciccarella

Biblio References: 
Volume: 6 Pages: 1-8
Science of Advanced Materials