• A SIVASAMY

      Articles written in Bulletin of Materials Science

    • Photocatalytically active ZnO flaky nanoflowers for environmental remediation under solar light irradiation: effect of morphology on photocatalytic activity

      G A SUGANYA JOSEPHINE K JAYAPRAKASH G MEENAKSHI A SIVASAMY G NIRMALA DEVI R N VISWANATH

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      ZnO-flaky-like nanoflowers with enhanced photocatalytic activity were synthesized by a new hydrothermal technique. The material was characterized and the photocatalytic studies were conducted under solar light irradiation for a model azo dye, Orange G. The material was compared with ZnO nanosphere and nanorod. The results showed the particle size of the nanostructures as a nanorod is 62–81 nm, as a nanosphere is 40–70 nm and as flaky nanoflowers is 20–30 nm (thickness of the flake). The photocatalytic activity showed an enhanced 2-fold increase in the activity for nanoflowers when compared to nanorods and spheres. The Brauner–Emmett–Teller results showed that the nanoflowers (14.197 m$^2$ g$^{-1}$) had a higher surface area nearly 3.5 times when compared to the nanospheres (4.06 m$^2$ g$^{-1}$) and seven times with nanorods (2.1 m$^2$ g$^{-1}$) which is the possibility of such high photocatalytic activity. The smaller particle size and the arrangement of nanoflowers play an important role in enhanced photocatalytic activity.

    • Flower-shaped ZnO–CeO$_2$ nanorectangulates: an efficient photocatalyst for degradation of endocrine disruptor 2,4-dichlorophenoxy acetic acid under visible light

      G A SUGANYA JOSEPHINE K JAYAPRAKASH A SIVASAMY

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      Nanosized, rectangularly arranged ZnO–CeO$_2$ nanoflowers were prepared by a simple hydrothermal technique. The prepared nanocomposites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), UV–visible differential reflectance spectroscopy, field-emission scanning electron microscope, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller techniques. Different compositions of composites were prepared and the best composition was used for conducting the photocatalytic studies. The degradation of 2,4-dichlorophenoxy acetic acid (2,4-D), a herbicide and endocrine-disrupting agent, was performed under visible-light irradiation. The results showed the nanocomposite to be in a flower-like structure comprising of rectangular-shaped ZnO on which CeO$_2$ particles were evenly distributed. This flower-shaped ZnO–CeO$_2$ nanorectangulate composite comprises particle sizes ranging from 50–100 nm of rectangular thickness and 10–20 nm spherical particles. The XRD and FT-IR results prove the presence of ZnO and CeO$_2$ in the prepared nanocomposite. The bandgap energy was found to be 3.18 eV. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy proved the presence of Ce as Ce$^{4+}$ (CeO$_2$) in the prepared composite. A comparative study of nanocomposite and pristine ZnO showed increased activity. The photocatalytic preliminary and kinetic studies were conducted. The reaction followed pseudo-first-order kinetics. The UV–visible absorption spectrum and chemical oxygen demand decrease proved the complete degradation of the endocrine disruptor 2,4-D under visible-light irradiation.

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