Innovative three-dimensional (3D) eco-TiO2 photocatalysts for practical environmental and bio-medical applications

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It is known that water purified by conventional TiO2 photocatalysts may not be safe enough for drinking, due to the toxicity by tiny existence of TiO2 nanoparticles after water treatment. We herein demonstrate a facile design of a three-dimensional (3D) TiO2 photocatalyst structure with which both the efficiency of purification and the safety level of the final purified water can be improved and ensured, respectively. The structure, consisting of 3D sulfur-doped TiO2 microtubes in nanotubes (eco-TiO2), is suitable for both environmental and bio-medical applications. Investigation of its formation mechanism reveals that anodic aluminum oxide (AAO), owing to a spatial constraint, causes a simple, nanoparticles-to-nanotubes structural rearrangement as a template for nanotube growth. It is found that eco-TiO2 can be activated under visible-light irradiation by non-metal (sulfur; S) doping, after which it shows visible-light photocatalytic activities over a range of solar energy. Importantly, an in vitro cytotoxicity test of well-purified water by eco-TiO2 confirms that eco-TiO2 satisfies the key human safety conditions.
Publisher
NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
Issue Date
2014-10
Language
English
Article Type
Article
Keywords

SULFUR-DOPED TIO2; VISIBLE-LIGHT IRRADIATION; TITANIUM-DIOXIDE; NANOTUBE ARRAYS; NANOPARTICLES; FABRICATION; MECHANISM; GRAPHENE; CELLS; OXIDE

Citation

SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v.4

ISSN
2045-2322
DOI
10.1038/srep06740
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/195648
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