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Open Access Self-supported Ag/AgCl nanoparticles incorporated polymeric multilayer films for reusable electrophotocatalyst

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We describe here, synthesis and electrophotocatalytic activity of the nanocomposites of Ag/AgCl embedded in polymeric matrix. The nanocomposites were synthesized through a sequence of steps. First, polyelectrolyte multilayer (PEM) films of poly(allylamine hydrochloride) (PAH) and poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) were formed on ITO or glass slides. The multilayered films were then dipped into an aqueous solution of silver nitrate (AgNO3) under ambient conditions to incorporate Ag+ ions into the PEM films, in which Ag+ ions combine with Cl ions of PAH to form AgCl nanoparticles. A part of AgCl was partially reduced by PAH to form metallic Ag in contact with AgCl. The composite materials were characterized by several microscopic and spectroscopic techniques. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) proved the simultaneous presence of Ag+ ions and metallic Ag in the films. The amount of Ag in the films was also quantified with inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICPOES). The nanocomposites found application towards electrophotocatalytic degradation of the dye of methylene blue. Multiple hetero-junctions created in the ternary composite synergistically enhance the photocatalytic activity. Since the catalyst is prepared in the form of film, it can be readily separated from the experimental set up and can be reused. As a result, it shows minimum loss of catalytic activity after five cycles. In addition, the catalyst can degrade colorless organic contaminant of 2-chlorophenol.

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Keywords: AG/AGCL; ELECTROPHOTOCATALYSIS; HETERO-JUNCTIONS; NANOCOMPOSITES; POLYELECTROLYTE MULTILAYERS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2015

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  • Materials Express is a peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal reporting emerging researches on materials science, engineering, technology and biology. Cutting-edge researches on the synthesis, characterization, properties, and applications of a very wide range of materials are covered for broad readership; from physical sciences to life sciences. In particular, the journal aims to report advanced materials with interesting electronic, magnetic, optical, mechanical and catalytic properties for industrial applications.
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