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Fabrication of BiVO4 nanoplates with active facets on graphene sheets for visible-light photocatalyst

Li, Yao, Sun, Zhihua, Zhu, Shenmin, Liao, Yongliang, Chen, Zhixin, Zhang, Di
Carbon 2015 v.94 pp. 599-606
cross-linking reagents, ethanolamine, graphene, graphene oxide, hot water treatment, oxidation, oxygen, oxygen production, pH, phenol, photocatalysis, photocatalysts, pollutants
As a promising visible-light photocatalyst, BiVO4 is widely used for degradation of organic pollutants, selective synthesis of organics and O2 production from water. Morphology design and coupling with graphene are effective methods to enhance its photocatalytic efficiency. Herein, a novel hydrothermal method was developed for the fabrication of BiVO4 nanoplates with exposed {010} facets onto reduced graphene oxide sheets (RGO). During the process, ethanolamine used acts as a pH regulator to intrigue the exposure of {010} planes of BiVO4 as well as a crosslinking agent. As a result an aerogel-like structure of the composite was obtained. When used as a photocatalyst, the resultant composite showed an enhanced performance in both the O2 evolution from water and the oxidation of phenol in comparison with pure BiVO4. This enhanced performance may be explained in terms of the synergetic effects of the unique nanoplate BiVO4 with exposed {010} planes, the improved electronic conductivity due to the addition of graphene, and more importantly, the interface interaction between the BiVO4 and RGO which reduces the recombination loss of photo-generated charges effectively.