Gamma ray assisted modification of carbon quantum dot/polyurethane nanocomposites: structural, mechanical and photocatalytic study†
In recent years, water pollution and contamination had become a major threat to the ecosystem. However, the use of nanostructured materials has been proven as a very promising approach in the treatment of polluted water. The present study reports the results of the gamma ray-assisted modification of hydrophobic carbon quantum dot (hCQD)/polyurethane nanocomposites for photocatalytic degradation of organic dyes. Different characterization methods were applied to investigate the influence of the different doses of gamma irradiation (1, 10 and 200 kGy) on the physical and chemical properties of nanocomposites (morphology, chemical content, mechanical properties, wettability, and potential for singlet oxygen generation). Surface morphology and mechanical properties analyses showed that gamma rays induced insignificant changes in the structure of nanocomposites, but the potential for singlet oxygen generation increased significantly. Here we also explore, in detail, the photocatalytic properties of gamma-ray modified hCQDs/polyurethane nanocomposites. UV-vis analysis showed that the removal efficiency of the rose bengal dye reached up to 97% for the nanocomposite irradiated with the dose of 200 kGy.