Functional properties of LaxCe1−xO2−δ nanocrystals and their bulk ceramics
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Structure–property correlations were investigated for LaxCe1−xO2−δ (x = 0.05, 0.15) system (for both nanoparticles and ceramic). The nanoparticles were synthesized by the co-precipitation route and characterized for their structural, catalytic and visible light driven photocatalytic properties. Synthesised LaxCe1−xO2−δ nanopowders depicted phase purity with excellent compositional control as confirmed by various structural characterisation tools. The 15% La3+-doped ceria nanoparticles portrayed superior photocatalytic properties; complete degradation (99%) of the methylene blue dye was observed within 60 min of visible light irradiation under an alkaline medium. High density (> 96%) of the ceramics (sintered at 1580 °C for 2 h) confirmed promising sinterability of the synthesised powders. The ionic conductivities of the LaxCe1−xO2−δ ceramics increased with temperature and frequency owing to enhanced oxygen vacancies in the ceria matrix as a result of doping (of La3+-ions); a maximum conductivity of ~ 8.4 × 10−2 S cm−1 was obtained at 900 °C for the 15% La3+-doped ceria ceramics at 1 MHz frequency.
Saurabh Srivastava was thankful to Indian Institute of Technology Patna, India, for the financial assistance. The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from DST-SERB, Government of India, Grant No. SB/FTP/ETA-0160/2014.
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest to this work.
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