Large-scale and green synthesis of octahedral flower-like cupric oxide nanocrystals with enhanced photochemical properties

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Abstract

In this work, a large-scale and green method is reported for the facile synthesis of octahedral flower-like CuO nanocrystals via a coordination-deposition route by using Fehling regents. Not any harmful organic chemicals were used during the reaction period. The obtained hierarchical nanostructure can be rationally tailored by varying the concentration of tartrate ions and reaction time. The typical flower-like CuO nanocrystals in the range of 200-250 nm are consisted of numerous small crystalline whiskers, which present a porous surface with a specific surface area of 32.12 m 2 /g and a narrow band gap of 1.5 eV. Importantly, the flower-like CuO nanocrystals show an enhanced photocatalytic activity toward decomposing Rhodamine B (RhB) molecules. The degradation rate is about 87.9% in 40 min under visible light irradiation, which is about 2.5 times for the commercial CuO powers (35.2%). Moreover, the uniform flower-like monolayered CuO film exhibits an excellent photoelectrochemical (PEC) performance with a maximum photocurrent density of 58.8μA/cm 2 , which is nearly five times higher than the commercial CuO film. This novel synthesis approach provides a large-scale and green protocol for synthesizing hierarchical metal oxide nanocrystals that are useful for photocatalysis, PEC water splitting and photovoltaic device.

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Li, S. K., Pan, Y. Y., Wu, M., Huang, F. Z., Li, C. H., & Shen, Y. H. (2014). Large-scale and green synthesis of octahedral flower-like cupric oxide nanocrystals with enhanced photochemical properties. Applied Surface Science, 315(1), 169–177. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apsusc.2014.07.113

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