Synthesis of Cr and La-codoped SrTiO3 nanoparticles for enhanced photocatalytic performance under sunlight irradiation†
In this study, we report a facile polymeric citrate strategy for the synthesis of Cr,La-codoped SrTiO3 nanoparticles. The synthesized samples were well characterized by various analytical techniques. The UV-vis DRS studies reveal that the absorption edge shifts towards the visible light region after doping with Cr, which is highly beneficial for absorbing the visible light in the solar spectrum. More attractively, codoping with La exhibits greatly enhanced photocatalytic activity for the degradation of Rhodamine B under sunlight irradiation. The optimum photocatalytic activity at 1 atom% of Cr,La-codoped SrTiO3 nanoparticles is almost 6 times higher than that of pure SrTiO3 nanoparticles and 3 times higher than that of Cr-doped SrTiO3 nanoparticles. The high photocatalytic performance in the present photocatalytic system is due to codoping with La, which acts as a most effective donor for stabilizing Cr3+ in Cr,La-codoped SrTiO3 nanoparticles. More importantly, the synthesized photocatalysts possess high reusability. A proposed mechanism for the enhanced photocatalytic activity of Cr,La-codoped SrTiO3 nanoparticles was also investigated by trapping experiments. Therefore, our results not only demonstrate the highly efficient visible light photocatalytic activity of the Cr,La-codoped SrTiO3 photocatalyst, but also enlighten the codoping strategy in the design and development of advanced photocatalytic materials for energy and environmental applications.