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Gaseous benzene degradation by photocatalysis using ZnO + Zn2TiO4 thin films obtained by sol-gel process

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The benzene pollutant in gaseous phase was successfully degraded by using ZnO + Zn2TiO4 multicomponent oxide thin films as photocatalysts. The films were obtained with different Ti/Zn ratios (0, 0.20, 0.40, 0.45, 0.50, 0.67, 0.84, and 1) by the sol-gel route. The initial level of benzene concentration was 110 ± 10 ppm. The process was carried out under different conditions of relative humidity (RH): 25, 50, and 80 % in a batch-type reactor, at room temperature. The results show benzene degradation near to 95 % at t = 240 min, where the multicomponent oxide semiconductor has a Ti/Zn ratio of 0.67. Meanwhile, with the TiO2 thin films, only a degradation of 70 % was reached at the same measurement conditions. This synergistic effect on the photocatalytic activity is a result of the coupling of both semiconductor oxides. An adverse effect on the photocatalytic activity was observed as the relative humidity increases.

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This work was supported by Consejo de Ciencia y Tecnología del Estado de Querétaro (CONCyTEQ) and Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT) under Project Fomix 2012-192880 and Project CB-2008-106912, respectively. The authors thank CONACyT for the fellowship awarded to M. Sci. F. A. Hernández García. The authors wish to thank M. Sci. Cyntia I. Zúñiga Romero, M. Sci. Joaquín Márquez Marín, M. Sci. Adair Jiménez Nieto, and Eng. J. Eleazar Urbina Álvarez for their technical assistance.

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Correspondence to R. Castanedo-Pérez.

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Responsible editor: Santiago V. Luis

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Hernández-García, F.A., Torres-Delgado, G., Castanedo-Pérez, R. et al. Gaseous benzene degradation by photocatalysis using ZnO + Zn2TiO4 thin films obtained by sol-gel process. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 13191–13199 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-016-6438-2

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  • ZnO
  • Zn2TiO4
  • Multicomponent oxide
  • Benzene
  • Photocatalysis