Effects of swift heavy ion irradiation on structural, optical and photocatalytic properties of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites prepared by carbothermal evaporation method

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Abstract

ZnO-CuO nanocomposite thin films were prepared by carbothermal evaporation of ZnO and Cu, combined with annealing. The effects of 90 MeV Ni7+ ion irradiation on the structural and optical properties of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites were studied by using X-ray diffraction (XRD), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), UV-visible absorption spectroscopy and Raman spectroscopy. XRD studies showed the presence of ZnO and CuO nanostructures in the nanocomposites. FESEM images revealed the presence of nanosheets and nanorods in the nanocomposites. The photocatalytic activity of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites was evaluated on the basis of degradation of methylene blue (MB) and methyl orange (MO) dyes under sun light irradiation and it was observed that swift heavy ion irradiation results in significant enhancement in the photocatalytic efficiency of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites towards degradation of MB and MO dyes. The possible mechanism for the enhanced photocatalytic activity of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites is proposed. We attribute the observed enhanced photocatalytic activity of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites to the combined effects of improved sun light utilization and suppression of the recombination of photogenerated charge carriers in ZnO-CuO nanocomposites.

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Kuriakose, S., Avasthi, D. K., & Mohapatra, S. (2015). Effects of swift heavy ion irradiation on structural, optical and photocatalytic properties of ZnO-CuO nanocomposites prepared by carbothermal evaporation method. Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology, 6(1), 928–937. https://doi.org/10.3762/bjnano.6.96

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