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J Colloid Interface Sci. 2006 Dec 1;304(1):166-71. Epub 2006 Aug 24.

Enhancement of titanium dioxide photocatalysis by water-soluble fullerenes.

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  • 1Particle Engineering Research Center, 205 Particle Science and Technology Building, PO Box 116135, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA.


Fullerenes are known for their unique electronic properties including high electron affinity. Although use of fullerenes for scavenging photo-generated electrons from titanium dioxide particles has been demonstrated, no attempts have been made to utilize the unique properties of fullerenes to increase the efficacy of photocatalysis. The present study has demonstrated that a mixture of water-soluble polyhydroxy fullerenes (PHF) and titanium dioxide (anatase polymorph) enhances photocatalytic degradation of organic dye. The PHF molecules adsorbed to the surface of titanium dioxide due to electrostatic forces, with adsorption density being higher at lower pH values. The surface coverage of titanium dioxide nanoparticles by PHF molecules determined the extent of enhancement, with an optimum dosed weight ratio of PHF to titanium dioxide at 0.001. Hydroxylation and concomitant solubilization of fullerenes allow their unique electronic properties to be harnessed for photocatalysis.

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