Preparation and photocatalytic activity of TiO2 films with Ni nanoparticles
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Titania thin films were synthesized by sol–gel dip-coating method with metallic Ni nanoparticles synthesized separately from an organometallic precursor Ni(COD)2 (COD = cycloocta-1,5-diene) in presence of 1,3-diaminopropane as a stabilizer. Titania was obtained from a titanium isopropoxide precursor solution in presence of acetic acid. A Ni/TiO2 sol system was used to coat glass substrate spheres (6, 4 and 3 mm diameter sizes), and further heat treatment at 400 °C was carried out to promote the crystallization of titania. XRD analysis of the TiO2 films revealed the crystallization of the anatase phase. Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and High Resolution TEM studies of Ni nanoparticles before mixing with the TiO2 solution revealed the formation of Ni nanostructures with an average size of 5–10 nm. High-angle annular dark-field images of the Ni/TiO2 system revealed well-dispersed Ni nanoparticles supported on TiO2 and confirmed by AFM analysis. The photocatalytic activity of the Ni/TiO2 films was evaluated in hydrogen evolution from the decomposition of ethanol using a mercury lamp for UV light irradiation. Titania films in presence of Ni nanoparticles show higher efficiency in their photocatalytic properties in comparison with TiO2.
KeywordsSol–gel Thin films Nickel Nanoparticles Organometallic
This work was supported by CONACyT 47279, 59408 and 59921 Projects. The authors thank Hector Dorantes Rosales (ESIQIE-IPN) for TEM analysis, V. Montiel Palma (CIQ-UAEM) and Benito Barrera Garcia for their support on the experimental work. The authors would like to thank David Nentwick for his editing work on this paper. The authors would also like to thank M. García Murillo for her assistance.
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