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Nitrate-assisted photocatalytic efficiency of defective Eu-doped Pr(OH)3 nanostructures

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Abstract

Pr(OH)3 one-dimensional nanostructures are a less studied member of lanthanide hydroxide nanostructures, which recently demonstrated an excellent adsorption capacity for organic pollutant removal from wastewater. In this study, Pr1−xEux(OH)3 (x = 0, 0.01, 0.03, and 0.05) defective nanostructures were synthesized by a facile and scalable microwave-assisted hydrothermal method using KOH as an alkaline metal precursor. The phase and surface composition, morphology, vibrational, electronic and optical properties of the as-prepared samples were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), Raman, infrared (IR), photoluminescence (PL), and diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (DRS). It was deduced that the incorporation of Eu3+ ions promoted the formation of oxygen vacancies in the already defective Pr(OH)3, subsequently changing the Pr(OH)3 nanorod morphology. The presence of KNO3 phase was registered in the Eu-doped samples. The oxygen-deficient Eu-doped Pr(OH)3 nanostructures displayed an improved photocatalytic activity in the removal of reactive orange (RO16) dye under UV-vis light irradiation. An enhanced photocatalytic activity of the Eu-doped Pr(OH)3 nanostructures was caused by the synergetic effect of oxygen vacancies and Eu3+ (NO3) ions present on the Pr(OH)3 surface, the charge separation efficiency and the formation of the reactive radicals. In addition, the 3% Eu-doped sample exhibited very good adsorptive properties due to different morphology and higher electrostatic attraction with the anionic dye. Pr1−xEux(OH)3 nanostructures with the possibility of tuning their adsorption/photocatalytic properties present a great potential for wastewater treatment.

Graphical abstract: Nitrate-assisted photocatalytic efficiency of defective Eu-doped Pr(OH)3 nanostructures

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Publication details

The article was received on 12 May 2017, accepted on 06 Nov 2017 and first published on 07 Nov 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7CP06440C
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2017, Advance Article
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    Nitrate-assisted photocatalytic efficiency of defective Eu-doped Pr(OH)3 nanostructures

    S. Aškrabić, V. D. Araújo, M. Passacantando, M. I. B. Bernardi, N. Tomić, B. Dojčinović, D. Manojlović, B. Čalija, M. Miletić and Z. D. Dohčević-Mitrović, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2017, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7CP06440C

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