(639c) UV-Assisted Synthesis of Carbon Nanotube-TiO2 Nanocomposites for Enhanced Photocatalytic Air Purification

Authors: 
Amama, P. B., Kansas State University
Almkhelfe, H., Kansas State University
Li, X., Kansas State University
Baker-Fales, M., Kansas State University
Efficient photocatalysts consisting of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) decorated with TiO2 nanoparticles were synthesized by a simple two-step process that is free of aggressive acid treatments that often introduce defects to CNTs. The novel synthesis process involved UV-assisted oxidation of CNTs using H2O2, followed by the deposition of TiO2 via a wet chemical method using TiCl4 as a titanium source. The resulting CNT/TiO2 nanocomposites have been characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and Raman spectroscopy. XRD results revealed that the crystalline structure of TiO2 is anatase and the TEM results showed the undamaged tubular morphology of CNTs decorated with TiO2 nanoparticles. The XPS data revealed the intimate chemical interactions between the CNTs and TiO2 in the nanocomposites. The expected synergistic effect and efficient separation of photogenerated electron-hole pairs in the synthesized CNT/TiO2 nanocomposites were verified in gas-phase photocatalytic degradation of VOCs.