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Issue 2, 2011
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Titanoniobate and niobate nanosheet photocatalysts: superior photoinduced hydrophilicity and enhanced thermal stability of unilamellar Nb3O8 nanosheet

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Abstract

Unique photocatalysts based on novel two-dimensional (2D) oxide nanosheets have been synthesized and their photochemical activity has been examined. Monolayer films of titanoniobate and niobate (TiNbO5, Ti2NbO7, Ti5NbO14, and Nb3O8) nanosheets, synthesized by exfoliating layered oxide precursors through a soft-chemical procedure, were fabricated on quartz glass substrate via a sequential adsorption method. All the nanosheet films exhibited good photoinduced hydrophilicity, while their oxidation activity was very low. This behavior can be regarded as inherent features of nanosheet-type photocatalysts having molecularly thin 2D anisotropy. Such ultrathin flexible structures are advantageous for facilitating photo-driven surface wettability change. Especially, the hydrophilic conversion property of Nb3O8 nanosheet was highly efficient, showing activity that was at least one order of magnitude superior to that of the widely used photocatalyst film of polycrystalline anatase TiO2. Moreover, the monolayer film of Nb3O8 nanosheet was found to have enhanced thermal stability and chemical resistance, particularly against diffusion of sodium ions at elevated temperature: Nb3O8 nanosheet film heated on sodium-rich glass (soda-lime glass) substrate maintained excellent hydrophilic conversion activity, whereas Ti0.87O2 nanosheet as well as anatase (TiO2) based photocatalysts was virtually deactivated. These features are a great advantage of Nb3O8 nanosheet photocatalysts for developing the practical super-hydrophilic applications where post-annealing is indispensable.

Graphical abstract: Titanoniobate and niobate nanosheet photocatalysts: superior photoinduced hydrophilicity and enhanced thermal stability of unilamellar Nb3O8 nanosheet

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Publication details

The article was received on 14 Sep 2010, accepted on 11 Nov 2010 and first published on 09 Dec 2010


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C0EE00437E
Citation: Energy Environ. Sci., 2011,4, 535-542
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    Titanoniobate and niobate nanosheet photocatalysts: superior photoinduced hydrophilicity and enhanced thermal stability of unilamellar Nb3O8 nanosheet

    T. Shibata, G. Takanashi, T. Nakamura, K. Fukuda, Y. Ebina and T. Sasaki, Energy Environ. Sci., 2011, 4, 535
    DOI: 10.1039/C0EE00437E

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