Bifunctional bridging linker-assisted synthesis and characterization of TiO2/Au nanocomposites
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Using a simple organic bifunctional bridging linker, titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles were coupled with the Au nanoparticles to form TiO2/Au nanocomposites with a variety of Au loadings. This organic bifunctional linker, meso-2,3-dimercaptosuccinic acid, contains two types of functional groups: (i) the carboxyl group, which enables binding to the TiO2, and (ii) the thiol group, which enables binding to the Au. In addition, the organic bifunctional linker acts as a stabilizing agent to prevent the agglomeration and growth of the Au particles, resulting in the formation of highly dispersed Au nanoparticles. To form the TiO2/Au nanocomposites in a simple way, we deliberately applied a synthetic method that simultaneously ensures: (i) the capping of the Au nanoparticles and (ii) the binding of different amounts of Au to the TiO2. The TiO2/Au nanocomposites formed with this method show enhanced UV and Vis photocatalytic activities when compared to the pure TiO2 nanopowders.
KeywordsBifunctional bridging linker TiO2/Au nanocomposites Plasmonic noble metal Photocatalytic activity
The authors wish to thank Dr. Janez Zavašnik from the Jožef Stefan Institute for the HAADF–STEM analysis.
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