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Iranian researchers from Malayer University succeeded in the production of a type of nanocomposite that helps better removal of organic pollutants up to three times in comparison with pure titania.
The nanocomposite can be used in the removal of heavy metals and in the purification of wastewater.
This research studied the effects of adding impurities to titania by using silicon (Si) and zirconium (Zr) on the stability of anatase phase formed at high temperatures. In addition, studying photocatalytic properties and the amount of degradation of the organic pollutant of methyl orange by the produced nanocomposite under visible light radiation was among other issues that were dealt with in this research.
Among the achievements acquired by the researchers in this study, mention can be made of the production of titania-based three-components nanocomposite, the possibility of organic pollutant removal up to three times comparing to pure titania, and the possibility of the stabilization of anatase phase up to 1000°C. The results of the research can be used in the industries related to the removal of inorganic and organic pollutants and in the purification of petrochemical plants wastewater.
In case low concentration of rutile phase (10-20%) is added to anatase phase, photocatalytic properties of titania increase. Adding impurities to titania network by using metallic cations may prevent or help the higher concentration in rutile phase. It depends on the radius of the used cations and their arrangement in titania 3-D network.
According to the researchers, specific area of nanoparticles and adsorption centers increase when these materials are produced in the form of nanocomposites. As a result, photocatalytic properties increase.
Results of the research have been published in details in Journal of Sol-Gel Science and Technology, vol. 69, issue 2, February 2014, pp. 351-356.
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