Controllable synthesis of nanotube-type graphitic C3N4 and their visible-light photocatalytic and fluorescent properties†
This paper describes a facile and generally feasible method to synthesize nanotube-type graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) by directly heating melamine packed in an appropriate compact degree which plays a crucial role in the formation process of g-C3N4. This approach has several advantages: (i) no templates or extra organics are involved; (ii) high industrial feasibility; (iii) low cost; and (iv) general applicability. The as-synthesized g-C3N4 samples show intense fluorescence with a photoluminescent (PL) peak at 460 nm indicating their potential applications as a blue light fluorescence material. They also exhibit excellent visible-light photocatalytic activity compared to a reference P25 photocatalyst. The method reported may open up new opportunities for further studies as well as practical applications of g-C3N4 nanotubes in fields such as light-emitting devices, gas storage and photocatalysis.