This project will generate scientific knowledge to increase the competitive edge, technological base of EEL/USP in the material area. We intend to explore the development of various photocatalysts. In special, we aimed to study the feasibility of TiO2-carbon xerogel as photo catalyst in the photo-degradation of organic dyes. Numerous efforts will be made to improve the response to visible light, quantum efficiency and photocatalytic activity of the samples. Certain routes will be used for this way, including metal deposition. In particular, the TiO2-carbon xerogel preparation will be studied, as this will be the greatest technological innovation of this project. The use of carbon xerogelin the semiconductor-carbonaceous material preparation is justified by their excellent electrical conductivity, high surface area and porosity. The tannin molecule choice as xerogel precursor is based at reducing costs and environmental impacts, as well as adds value to the proposed technological innovation. The metal oxide will be prepared by chemical precipitation method. The photocatalytic activity under UV-visible light irradiation was evaluated using methylene blue (MB) as a model organic compound. The dye concentration will be determined through its absorption maximum band(670 nm for MB) using a UV-vis spectrophotometer. The band gap energy of the samples, the quantity of adsorbed molecules on their surfaces, and the effect of metal ion doping and metal deposition on the photocatalytic properties of the samples will be determined using diffuse reflectance spectroscopy. The crystallographic phase, morphology, elemental analysis, analysis of metal content, and porosity of the samples will be examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive spectrometry (EDS), inductively coupled plasma emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES), and nitrogen adsorption-desorption isotherms, respectively. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) will be used to measure enthalpy changes due to changes in the physical and chemical properties of the samples. Thermogravimetry (TGA) will be used to evaluate the thermal stability of the materials.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: