A highly efficient UV-emitting Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal as a fluorescent irradiation source for use in heavy oil viscosity reduction
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In this work, we discover and report a type of Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal that can not only show a highly efficient ultraviolet (UV) luminescence but also be used for reducing the heavy oil viscosity. To fully characterize the photoluminescence (PL) properties of Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal, various techniques, such as X-ray diffraction, scanning electronic microscope, UV–visible diffuse reflectance and PL spectra, are carried out. Our results reveal that the Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal features the particle size at ~ 30 µm and an broad Bi3+-related emission band peaked at 300 nm upon excitation at 270 nm at the same time. Significantly, although the Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal only show one emission band, this band can cover almost the whole UV spectral region from 290 to 410 nm, allowing this type of crystal to cover the band gap of TiO2 semiconductor that has the absorption wavelength of 387 nm and therefore serve as an efficient UV irradiation source for application in the photocatalytic field. As a result, we have designed a ceramic substrate to verify this application, through mixing the TiO2 semiconductor and Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+ crystal. Our results reveal that the photocatalytic properties of Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+/TiO2-based ceramic can be greatly enhanced for reducing the heavy oil viscosity (~ 4 times) as compared to the heavy oil that does not involve the Mg3Y2Ge3O12:Bi3+/TiO2-based ceramic.
This work is financially supported by the Liaoning Provincial Department of Education Basic Research Project (No. 2017LFW002).
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