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Modified Titanium Dioxide Photocatalysts for the Enhanced Photodegradation of Organic Substrates

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Two approaches to generate TiO2 photocatalyst for the enhanced photodegradation of substrates are described. One approach includes the surface modification of TiO2, with a layer consisting of a N,N'-bipyridinium π-acceptor layer. The resulting photocatalyst reveals superior photocatalytic activity as compared to the non-modified TiO2 for the decomposition of π-donor substrates such as 1,4-dimethoxybenzene (1), 1,2-dimethoxybenzene (2) and indole (3). The enhanced photocatalytic activity of the modified TiO2, V2+- TiO2 is attributed to the concentration of the pollutant at the heterogeneous catalyst surface via the formation of supramolecular π donor-acceptor complexes. A second approach to improve the photocatalytic activity of TiO2, involves its doping with Fe(III)-Phthalocyanine, Fe(III)-Pc. The Fe(III)-Pc doped TiO2, Fe(III)-Pc/TiO2 is formed by the sol-gel method. The series of organic substrates p-nitrobenzoic acid (5), p-aminobenzoic acid (6), p-chlorophenoxyacetic acid (7), salicylic acid (8) and aniline (9), is effectively degraded by the Fe(III)-Pc/TiO2 catalyst compared to the non-modified catalyst. Photodegradation of the organic pollutants in the presence of Fe(III)-Pc/TiO2 is substantially enhanced as compared to non-modified TiO2 and leads to complete mineralization. The enhanced activity of the Fe(III)-Pc doped TiO2, is attributed to the synergistic generation of °OH radical, the active species in the degradation of the organic substrates, at the semiconductor surface, via the photochemical cleavage of light-induced generated H2O2 at the semiconductor surface.

Affiliations: 1: Institute of Chemistry and the Farkas Center for Light-Induced Processes, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91904, ISRAEL; 2: Lehrstuhl für Umweltmesstechnik der Universität Karlsruhe (RH), Engler-Bunte Institut, Richard-Willstätter-Allee 5, 76128 Karlsruhe, GERMANY


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