Cross-Linked g-C3N4/rGO Nanocomposites with Tunable Band Structure and Enhanced Visible Light Photocatalytic Activity
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Cross-linked rather than non-covalently bonded graphitic carbon nitride (g-C 3 N 4 )/ reduced graphene oxide (rGO) nanocomposites with tunable band structures have been successfully fabricated by thermal treatment of a mixture of cyanamide and graphene oxide with different weight ratios. The experimental results indicate that compared to pure g-C 3 N 4 , the fabricated CN/rGO nanocomposites show narrowed bandgaps with an increased in the rGO ratio. Furthermore, the band structure of the CN/rGO nanocomposites can be readily tuned by simply controlling the weight ratio of the rGO. It is found that an appropriate rGO ratio in nanocomposite leads to a noticeable positively shifted valence band edge potential, meaning an increased oxidation power. The tunable band structure of the CN/rGO nanocomposites can be ascribed to the formation of C - O - C covalent bonding between the rGO and g-C 3 N 4 layers, which is experimentally confi rmed by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) and X-ray photoelectron (XPS) data. The resulting nanocomposites are evaluated as photocatalysts by photocatalytic degradation of rhodamine B (RhB) and 4-nitrophenol under visible light irradiation ( ? > 400 nm). The results demonstrate that the photocatalytic activities of the CN/rGO nanocomposites are strongly influenced by rGO ratio. With a rGO ratio of 2.5%, the CN/rGO-2.5% nanocomposite exhibits the highest photocatalytic effi ciency, which is almost 3.0 and 2.7 times that of pure g-C 3 N 4 toward photocatalytic degradation of RhB and 4-nitrophenol, respectively. This improved photocatalytic activity could be attributed to the improved visible light utilization, oxidation power, and electron transport property, due to the signifi cantly narrowed bandgap, positively shifted valence band-edge potential, and enhanced electronic conductivity.
© 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: Cross-Linked g-C3N4/rGO Nanocomposites with Tunable Band Structure and Enhanced Visible Light Photocatalytic Activity, Small, Vol. 9(19), 2013, pp. 3336-3344, which has been published in final form at dx.doi.org/10.1002/smll.201203135.
Inorganic Green Chemistry
Nanofabrication, Growth and Self Assembly