Critical role of the heterojunction interface of silver decorated ZnO nanocomposite with sulfurized graphitic carbon nitride heterostructure materials for photocatalytic applications

Shahid Iqbal, Ali Bahadur, Shahid Ali, Zahoor Ahmad, Mohsin Javed, Rana Muhammad Irfan, Naveed Ahmad, Muhammad Azam Qamar, Guocong Liu, Muhammad Bilal Akbar, Muhammad Nawaz

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

56 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The heterojunctions formed at the interfaces between the metal oxide and graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) play a critical role in photocatalytic reactions. Herein, we synthesized a series of heterostructures by the integration of 7% Ag-decorated ZnO nanocomposite (NC) with different contents (3.5–75 wt%) of sulphur-doped graphitic carbon nitride (S-g-C3N4). A unique heterostructure formed between Ag/ZnO and S-g-C3N4 generates a vast number of heterojunctions and abundant catalytic active sites for photocatalytic degradation. The material characterization was performed by XRD, SEM, TEM, XPS, FTIR, UV-Vis spectroscopy, BET surface area, and transient photocurrent response. The as-synthesized 7% Ag/ZnO NC showed maximum methylene blue (MB) degradation among the series (0–9%) under visible irradiation. Interestingly, the 25% Ag/ZnO/S-g-C3N4 heterostructure exhibited a significant increase in photodegradation of MB and 98% dye degraded in only 60 min, which was degraded up to 59% by 7% Ag/ZnO NC. Moreover, the photo-corrosion of ZnO NPs was inhibited by simultaneous doping with Ag and coupling with S-g-C3N4, which was verified through cyclic photo-degradation with six consecutive dye degradation tests. The synergistic effects of the Ag/ZnO/S-g-C3N4 heterojunction, enhanced photocatalytic activity, and photo-corrosion resistance were demonstrated successfully.

Original languageEnglish
Article number158338
JournalJournal of Alloys and Compounds
Volume858
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Ag-decorated
  • Carbon nitride
  • Heterostructure
  • Nanocomposites
  • Synergistic effect
  • ZnO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry

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