Fabrication of a photo-catalytic cell using polymer-based composite films and investigation of its performance in the degradation of methyl blue
A facile method for the preparation of flexible semiconductor/polymer composite films with a CdS and ZnS particle layer on their surface has been developed. The as-prepared composite films were used as building blocks to fabricate a photo-catalytic cell. Methyl methacrylate (MMA) and butyl methacrylate (BMA) were copolymerized via free radical polymerization. BMA was used to tune the flexibility of the films. Allyl methyl sulfide (AMS) and N-allylmethylamine (AMA) were used as functional monomers to coordinate with Cd2+/Zn2+ ions. Cd2+/Zn2+ ions were chemically bonded to the PMMA-BMA-AMS (PMBS) or PMMA-BMA-AMA (PMBA) films. By addition of a thioacetamide (TAA) solution, S2− ions were gradually released and combined with Cd2+/Zn2+ ions to form CdS/ZnS particles. Accordingly, CdS/PMBA, ZnS/PMBA, CdS/PMBS and ZnS/PMBS films were prepared. The composite films were characterized and used to fabricate a photo-catalytic cell. The well-designed cell showed excellent performance in the degradation of the pollutant methyl blue (MB). Also, this cell could be used repeatedly just by rinsing with water after use.