Enhanced sunlight-driven photocatalytic performance of Ag–ZnO hybrid nanoflowers

  • Sammia ShahidEmail author
  • Urooj Fatima
  • Muhammad Zaheer Rasheed
  • Muhammad Nadeem Asghar
  • Sabah Zaman
  • M. N. Sarwar
Original Article


Photocatalytic materials such as Ag-coated ZnO nanoflowers, pristine ZnO nanoflowers and ZnO nanorods were synthesized by template-assisted method for the treatment of industrial waste water through photocatalysis. Electropolishing and anodization lead to the formation of alumina template. After that, hydrothermal treatment was carried out for the growth of ZnO nanoflowers and nanorods on the template. The morphology of synthesized samples was investigated by scanning electron microscope, X-ray diffraction patterns and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. XRD patterns of samples clearly indicate the well crystalline structure of synthesized materials. The presence of Ag in Ag-coated ZnO nanoflowers was confirmed by EDS spectral analysis and X-ray diffraction patterns. Grain size was found to be in the range of 10–25 nm as calculated by Scherer’s formula from XRD patterns. The sunlight-driven photocatalytic activity of Ag-coated ZnO nanoflowers, ZnO nanoflowers and ZnO nanorods was investigated and compared with each other. In addition, the stability and recovery of photocatalyst were also checked. Photocatalytic degradation experiment results indicated that Ag-coated ZnO nanoflowers had highest photocatalytic activity towards methylene blue dye.


Pristine ZnO nanoflowers Hydrothermal synthesis Anodization Photocatalysis 



The authors would like to appreciate the University of Management & Technology, Lahore, Pakistan for providing the financial support of this work.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemistry, School of ScienceUniversity of Management and TechnologyLahorePakistan
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryForman Christian College (A Chartered University)LahorePakistan
  3. 3.Ibn-E-Sina Institute of TechnologyIslamabadPakistan

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