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Title: Nanoengineering of metal oxides for photocatalytic applications
Author: Sharma, Preetam Kumar
ISNI:       0000 0004 6494 9733
Awarding Body: Ulster University
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2017
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Heterogeneous photocatalysis is the acceleration of a photoreaction in the presence of a semiconductor, whereby, the semiconductor absorbs the photon energy to create charge carriers which may take part in redox reactions at the surface of the semiconductor. Photocatalysis has been investigated for the conversion of solar energy to fuels i.e. water splitting for hydrogen and carbon dioxide feduction to solar fuels. Also, photocatalysis has been widely investigated for the remediation of polluted air and water. The major challenge for solar photocatalysis is the requirement for the semiconductor to utilise the solar spectrum efficiently. To date, most photocatalytic materials work efficiently only in the UV domain. In this work, novel clusters modified titania materials were investigated for the enhanced photocatalytic solar energy harvesting efficiency. Additionally, the rate of photocatalytic degradation of pollutants was compared to the photoelectrochemical measurements for several commercial titanium dioxide nanoparticles. The first part of the research deals with the correlation between the photocatalytic activity with the analytical properties and photoelectrochemical measurements. A range of commercial TiCh nanoparticles were spray-coated onto Ti foil and, used as photoanodes to determine the photocurrent and open circuit potential under irradiation. This data was compared to photocatalytic degradation rate for formic acid and phenol using the same nanomaterials. The open circuit potential under irradiation provides better correlation to the observed photocatalytic degradation rate data for both phenol and formic acid as compared to the photocurrent. This is because under open circuit condition the photoelectrode is behaving like an immobilised photocatalytic system. In the second part of the project, copper clusters were prepared by adopting Brust-Schiffrin (BS) and electrochemical (EC) synthesis protocols. The average particle sizes of the clusters were 0.9 and 0.58 run for BS and EC copper clusters as measured by scanning transmission electron microscopy. The prepared clusters were Cu°/Cu+ as measured by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available