Facile synthesis of light harvesting semiconductor bismuth oxychloride nano photo-catalysts for efficient removal of hazardous organic pollutants.

Author(s) Seddigi, Z.S.; Gondal, M.A.; Baig, U.; Ahmed, S.A.; Abdulaziz, M.A.; Danish, E.Y.; Khaled, M.M.; Lais, A.
Journal PLoS One
Date Published 2017

In the present work, bismuth oxychloride nanoparticles-a light harvesting semiconductor photocatalyst-were synthesized by a facile hydrolysis route, with sodium bismuthate and hydroxylammonium chloride as the precursor materials. The as-synthesized semiconductor photocatalysts were characterized using X-ray diffraction analysis, Fourier transform infra-red spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, Field emission scanning electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Photoluminescence spectroscopy techniques. The crystal structure, morphology, composition, and optical properties of these facile synthesized bismuth oxychloride nanoparticles (BiOCl NPs) were compared to those of traditional bismuth oxychloride. In addition, the photocatalytic performance of facile-synthesized BiOCl NPs and traditional BiOCl, as applied to the removal of hazardous organic dyes under visible light illumination, is thoroughly investigated. Our results reveal that facile-synthesized BiOCl NPs display strong UV-Vis light adsorption, improved charge carrier mobility and an inhibited rate of charge carrier recombination, when compared to traditional BiOCl. These enhancements result in an improved photocatalytic degradation rate of hazardous organic dyes under UV-Vis irradiance. For instance, the facile-synthesized BiOCl NPs attained 100% degradation of methylene blue and methyl orange dyes in approximately 30 mins under UV-Vis irradiation, against 55% degradation for traditional BiOCl under similar experimental conditions.

DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0172218
ISSN 1932-6203
Citation PLoS ONE. 2017;12(2):e0172218.

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