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Issue 11, 2017
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Modulating interleaved ZnO assembly with CuO nanoleaves for multifunctional performance: perdurable CO2 gas sensor and visible light catalyst

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Abstract

Herein, we report the preparation of well characterized hierarchical CuO/ZnO heterostructures and demonstrate the versatility of this composite as a CO2 gas sensor and a visible light catalyst for methylene blue (MB) degradation. 3D hierarchical ZnO spheres were decorated with CuO nanoleaves to form the interleaved p-CuO/n-ZnO hetero-surfaces. Subsequently, silver (Ag) functionalized composites were tested for their sensitivity and selectivity towards CO2 gas as a core application. The nanostructured Ag@CuO/ZnO composite demonstrated an improved sensor response of 34% at 320 °C with response/recovery times of 76 and 265 s compared to the CuO/ZnO composite and control samples. Additionally, the Ag@CuO/ZnO composite displayed excellent recovery (97%), repeatability (96%), accuracy (86%), and lower baseline drifts with a co-efficient of variation (COV) of 4.5% measured over an extended period of 40 days towards 1000 ppm CO2 gas for 10 individually tested sensors. In a parallel application as a photocatalyst, the CuO/ZnO composite was observed to degrade 98% methylene blue in 180 min with the first order rate constant (κapp) found to be 6- and 75-fold greater, respectively, when compared to the ZnO and CuO samples under visible light irradiation. The gas sensing mechanism substantiated from in situ diffuse reflectance infra-red Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS) confirmed the formation of copper carbonate in the presence of CO2. Interleaved assembly ensured the high mobility of electron–hole pairs with concerted efforts from a high effective surface area, multi-interleaved p/n nano-interfaces and the catalytic role of Ag. The confluence of these factors resulted in an improved CO2 sensor response and photocatalytic performance.

Graphical abstract: Modulating interleaved ZnO assembly with CuO nanoleaves for multifunctional performance: perdurable CO2 gas sensor and visible light catalyst

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Publication details

The article was received on 09 Aug 2017, accepted on 12 Sep 2017 and first published on 12 Sep 2017


Article type: Research Article
DOI: 10.1039/C7QI00474E
Citation: Inorg. Chem. Front., 2017,4, 1848-1861
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    Modulating interleaved ZnO assembly with CuO nanoleaves for multifunctional performance: perdurable CO2 gas sensor and visible light catalyst

    S. Joshi, R. K. C. B., L. A. Jones, E. L. H. Mayes, S. J. Ippolito and M. V. Sunkara, Inorg. Chem. Front., 2017, 4, 1848
    DOI: 10.1039/C7QI00474E

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