In situ fluorine doped ZrO2−x nanotubes for efficient visible light photocatalytic activity
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The F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes are synthesized by anodic oxidization in a F-containing electrolyte and following a low temperature annealing process. The F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes exhibit a dramatic increase in visible light absorption and efficient visible light photocatalytic activity which are not possessed to normalized ZrO2. The fluorine in anodic ZrO2 nanotubes plays a vital role in the formation of abundant anion vacancies during the annealing. Combining the doping effect of the residual fluorine element, the band gap of the F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes reduced from 5.13 to 2.35 eV. Moreover, the transient photocurrent response plots and the photocatalytic experiments reveal the highly effective electrons–holes separation of the F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes and enhanced visible-light photocatalytic degradation for RhB. The degradation rate of RhB in the presence of the F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes catalyst has reached up to 83% under 2 h low-power LED light irradiation. In addition, the possible photocatalytic mechanism of the F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes has been proposed via studying the band structure. It is believed that the F-doped ZrO2−x nanotubes will have a bright future for sustainable energy sources and cleaning environment.
This study was funded by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, China.
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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