Microwave-assisted synthesis of bismuth vanadate nanoflowers decorated with gold nanoparticles with enhanced photocatalytic activity

  • Juliana S. SouzaEmail author
  • Fernando T. H. Hirata
  • Paola Corio
Research Paper


We describe the synthesis of bismuth vanadate nanoflowers decorated with Au nanoparticles (Au-BiVO4NF) using conventional oil bath or microwave irradiation as a heating source, where de AuNPs exhibit sizes of 29 ± 10 nm and 50 ± 11 nm. We show how microwaves can be used to replace well-stablished methods in the synthesis of inorganic nanomaterials and drastically reduce both time and energy consumptions. The Au-BiVO4NF obtained under microwave irradiation exhibited the same physical-chemical properties of those prepared through conventional heating; however, time lapse for synthetizing the heterojunction decreased from 4 h to only 10 min. The heterojunction is a very promising photocatalyst under visible light irradiation since BiVO4 exhibits low band-gap energy and Au nanoparticles can behave as electron sinks and/or as electron sources through plasmon resonance, increasing charge separation of photogenerated electrons and holes. This synergic effect resulted in a heterojunction able to degrade ~ 95% of methylene blue after 6 h of UV-visible light irradiation.


Photocatalysis Plasmon effect Nanomaterials Bismuth vanadate Gold nanoparticles Microwave synthesis 



We are thankful to LNNano-CNPEM for the use of TEM and SEM facilities.

Funding information

This work was supported by FAPESP (grant nos. 2016/21070-5, 2016/01020-3, 2017/11395-7, and 2017/12688-8) and CNPq (grant no. 474056/2013-9) and in part by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior - Brasil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing financial interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centro de Ciências Naturais e HumanasUniversidade Federal do ABCSanto AndréBrazil
  2. 2.Instituto de QuímicaUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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