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Study of ceramic materials for health and environment applications


Advanced ceramic materials (hereafter referred to as ACMs) are compounds with multifunctional features, with outstanding properties that make them valuable candidates for use in optical, electrical, photocatalysts, catalysts, sensors, biological devices (bactericidal, virucidal), among other properties. Among the ACMs, we can highlight the nanometric structures of molybdates (scheelite-like crystalline phase) and LTA zeolites, which are the object of interest in this study.It is well known that the crystal lattice ordering degree for ceramic material is closely related to its adsorption, photocatalysis, and surface reactions properties. The exposure of materials to ionizing radiation promotes higher surface disorder, affecting their reactivity, photocatalytic, biological, and functional processes. More detailed studies on the effect of ionization radiation on the material's behavior and response when exposed to biological molecules are necessary for designing sensors.ACMs can be employed for photocatalytic water treatment by removing harmful pollutants from water and returning it to the environment free of harmful molecules. Our literature review revealed that investigations related to the employment of molybdates studies in water treatment through photocatalysis are scarce, and this work will contribute to the development of this research area. In addition, such ACMs have remarkable properties that make them attractive candidates to be used in designing multifunctional textiles.These multifunctional materials have a high potential in the design of protective clothing once their innovative properties are achieved by using new chemical components, such as metal oxides, zeolites, and chitosans. The desired unusual properties are self-cleaning, antibacterial, antivirus, and UV protection effects. Studies related to the application of molybdates in the design of multifunctional tissues are absent, from our present body of knowledge, in the scientific literature.In addition, we will develop a non-invasive blood lactate concentration sensor and a humidity sensor based on the semiconductor characteristic of ACM scheelite, such as capacitive properties and surface reactivity properties of the material. This lactate sensor will allow the continuous measurement of blood lactate, which is important both clinically at the bedside and for sports performance. In this work, we will study the synthesis of nanometric ACMs of the scheelite type and the LTA zeolitic materials, their behavior when exposed to ionizing radiation, to water and lactate molecules, their applications in the design of functional tissues, and photocatalytic properties specifically on the degradation of harmful molecules (pigments) employing environmentally friendly strategies.Finally, this project provides an excellent opportunity to start an international research collaboration seeking solutions for several issues, including pigments disposal, with excellent opportunities for university exchange and funding. (AU)

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