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A novel route for preparing Ag2Se-based micro-nanocomposites and their photocatalytic activity


A novel oil–water interface method was successfully used to prepare rod-shaped silver selenide (Ag2Se) micro-nanoparticles from relatively low-toxic and cheap sodium selenosulfate by aging at 160 °C for 12 h. Then, under the same reaction conditions, AgCl/Ag2Se and Ag/Ag2Se micro-nanocomposites were synthesized by simply introducing different additives. The as-prepared micro-nanocomposites were characterized by the uses of XPS, XRD, SEM, BET, UV–vis, and PL. Cl plays a bifunctional role to act as the adsorbate and the source of AgCl. Under the irradiation of a fluorescent light (36 W), the photocatalytic activity of Ag2Se-based micro-nanocomposites was evaluated by degradation of acid fuchsin (AF) and malachite green (MG) dyes in the presence of 0.6 wt.% H2O2. The results showed that the recombination of AgCl and the deposition of Ag exerted a significant influence on the light absorption of the particles. AgCl/Ag2Se and Ag/Ag2Se composites exhibited much higher catalytic activity than pure Ag2Se with the same surface area, Ag/Ag2Se composite particles have the best photodegradation performance, and the AF degradation rate is faster than MG. In aqueous solutions, positively charged Ag2Se micro-nano particles can be easily combined with AF anionic dyes instead of MG cationic dyes, resulting in more efficient AF photodecomposition. The significant increase in photocatalytic activity of AgCl/Ag2Se is mainly due to the heterojunction formed between AgCl and Ag2Se components, reducing the recombination of electron and hole pairs. In the case of Ag/Ag2Se composite material, the noble metal Ag acts as an electron trap to improve the separation of charges. In total, the high efficiency of the composite photocatalysts implies that it is of great significance in the degradation of environmental pollutants.

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Data availability

The authors declare that all data supporting the findings of this study are available within the article.

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The authors declare that all data supporting the findings of this study are available within the article.

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Authors and Affiliations



Shaohua Yang: Investigation, data curation, and writing—original draft. Hui Zhang: Data curation, software, and supervision. Jiamin Zhang: Supplement of research and perfection of manuscript. Xingping Zhou: Resources and writing—reviewing and editing.

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Correspondence to Xingping Zhou.

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Yang, S., Zhang, H., Zhang, J. et al. A novel route for preparing Ag2Se-based micro-nanocomposites and their photocatalytic activity. J Nanopart Res 24, 170 (2022).

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  • Ag2Se composite particles
  • Heterojunction
  • Oil–water interface
  • Optical properties
  • Photocatalytic activity
  • Nanostructured catalysts
  • Environmental effects