Cube-like Ag/AgCl fabricated via a photoirradiation method and its substantially boosted plasmonic photocatalytic reactivity by an oxidation–chloridization treatment†
Plasmonic materials based on Ag/AgCl have been attracting great interest as visible-light-driven photocatalysts, where those featuring a cube-like morphology have received particular attention. Most of the currently existing protocols both for their fabrication and for their enhanced catalytic performance generally suffer from being complex, tedious or painstaking. The introduction of facile protocols to meet these issues is strongly desired. We herein demonstrate that cube-like Ag/AgCl could be facilely produced under ambient conditions via photoirradiation of a chloroform/acetonitrile solution of silver nitrate. The as-fabricated products could work as plasmonic photocatalysts towards the photodegradation of methyl orange under visible-light irradiation. More fascinatingly, it is found that our Ag/AgCl material could exhibit substantially boosted plasmonic photocatalytic performance by a factor of ca. 12 times simply after an oxidation–chloridization treatment under ambient conditions. It is disclosed that much easier access of the AgCl sites of the as-treated Ag/AgCl towards substrate molecules, which could facilitate efficient photoinduced charge separation/transfer, plays an important role in the evidently boosted photocatalytic performances. Our investigation might initiate a facile and alternative protocol for the synthesis of cube-like Ag/AgCl and pave a new yet simple route for the enhancement of catalytic reactivity.