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Photocatalytic reduction and scavenging of Hg(II) over templated-dewetted Au on TiO2 nanotubes

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Abstract

Gold-decorated TiO2 nanotubes were used for the photocatalytic abatement of Hg(II) in aqueous solutions. The presence of dewetted Au nanoparticles induces a strong enhancement of photocatalytic reduction and scavenging performances, with respect to naked TiO2. In the presence of chlorides, a massive formation of Hg2Cl2 nanowires, produced from Au nanoparticles, was observed using highly Au loaded photocatalysts to treat a 10 ppm Hg(II) solution. EDS and XPS confirmed the nature of the photo-produced nanowires. In the absence of chlorides and/or at lower Hg(II) starting concentrations, the scavenging of mercury proceeds through the formation of Hg–Au amalgams. Solar light driven Hg(II) abatements up to 90% were observed after 24 h. ICP-MS analysis revealed that the removed Hg(II) is accumulated on the photocatalyst surface. Regeneration of Hg-loaded exhaust photocatalysts was easily performed by anodic stripping of Hg(0) and Hg(I) to Hg(II). After four catalytic-regeneration cycles, only a 10% decrease of activity was observed.

Graphical abstract: Photocatalytic reduction and scavenging of Hg(ii) over templated-dewetted Au on TiO2 nanotubes

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Publication details

The article was received on 24 Sep 2018, accepted on 03 Dec 2018 and first published on 04 Dec 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8PP00424B
Citation: Photochem. Photobiol. Sci., 2019, Advance Article
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    Photocatalytic reduction and scavenging of Hg(II) over templated-dewetted Au on TiO2 nanotubes

    D. Spanu, A. Bestetti, H. Hildebrand, P. Schmuki, M. Altomare and S. Recchia, Photochem. Photobiol. Sci., 2019, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C8PP00424B

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