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Opt Express. 2012 Mar 12;20 Suppl 2:A340-50. doi: 10.1364/OE.20.00A340.

Bacteria-directed construction of hollow TiO2 micro/nanostructures with enhanced photocatalytic hydrogen evolution activity.

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State Key Lab of Metal Matrix Composites, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, 200240, China.


A general method has been developed for the synthesis of various hollow TiO2 micro/nanostructures with bacteria as templates to further study the structural effect on photocatalytic hydrogen evolution properties. TiO2 hollow spheres and hollow tubes, served as prototypes, are obtained via a surface sol-gel process using cocci and bacillus as biotemplates, respectively. The formation mechanisms are based on absorption of metal-alkoxide molecules from solution onto functional cell wall surfaces and subsequent hydrolysis to give nanometer-thick oxide layers. The UV-Vis absorption spectrum shows that the porous TiO2 hollow spheres have enhanced light harvesting property compared with the corresponding solid counterpart. This could be attributed to their unique hollow porous micro/nanostructures with microsized hollow cavities and nanovoids which could bring about multiple scattering and rayleigh scattering of light, respectively. The hollow TiO2 structures exhibit superior photocatalytic hydrogen evolution activities under UV and visible light irradiation in the presence of sacrificial reagents. The hydrogen evolution rate of hollow structures is about 3.6 times higher than the solid counterpart and 1.5 times higher than P25-TiO2. This work demonstrates the structural effect on enhancing the photocatalytic hydrogen evolution performance which would pave a new pathway to tailor and improve catalytic properties over a broad range.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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