Efficient advanced oxidation process (Aop) for photocatalytic contaminant degradation using exfoliated metal-free graphitic carbon nitride and visible light-emitting diodes

Adeem Ghaffar Rana, Minoo Tasbihi, Michael Schwarze, Mirjana Minceva

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22 Scopus citations

Abstract

The photocatalytic performance of metal-free graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3 N4 ) was examined using visible light-emitting diodes (LEDs). A comparative and parametric study was conducted using the photocatalytic degradation of phenol as a model reaction. The g-C3 N4 photocatalyst was synthesized from melamine using thermal condensation, followed by a thermal exfoliation that increases the catalyst surface area from 11 to 170 m2 /g. Different characterization techniques, namely X-ray powder diffraction, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, nitrogen adsorption using the Brunauer–Emmett–Teller method, ultraviolet-visible (UV–vis) spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy, photoluminescence spectroscopy (PL), and zeta potential analysis, were used to characterize the photocatalyst. A comparison of the photodegradation experiments conducted with a full-spectrum xenon lamp and a custom-made single-wavelength LED immersion lamp showed that the photocatalyst performance was better with the LED immersion lamp. Furthermore, a comparison of the performance of exfoliated and bulk g-C3 N4 revealed that exfoliated g-C3 N4 completely degraded the pollutant in 90 min, whereas only 25% was degraded with bulk g-C3 N4 in 180 min because the exfoliated g-C3 N4 enhances the availability of active sites, which promotes the degradation of phenol. Experiments conducted at different pH have shown that acidic pH favors the degradation process. The exfoliated g-C3 N4 has shown high photocatalytic performance in the photodegradation of other phenolic compounds, such as catechol, m-cresol, and xylenol, as well.

Original languageEnglish
Article number662
JournalCatalysts
Volume11
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2021

Keywords

  • G-C N
  • LEDs
  • Phenol
  • Photocatalysis
  • Wastewater treatment

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