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Photocatalysts with the photocatalytic "memory" effect could resolve the intrinsic activity loss of traditional photocatalysts when the light illumination is turned off. Due to the dual requirements of light absorption and energy storage/release functions, most previously reported photocatalysts with the photocatalytic "memory" effect were composite photocatalysts of two phase components, which may lose their performance due to gradually deteriorated interface conditions during their applications. In this work, a simple solvothermal process was developed to synthesize Bi2WO6 microspheres constructed by aggregated nanoflakes. The pure phase Bi2WO6 was found to possess the photocatalytic "memory" effect through the trapping and release of photogenerated electrons by the reversible chemical state change of W component in the (WO4)2- layers. When the illumination was switched off, Bi2WO6 microspheres continuously produced H2O2 in the dark as those trapped photogenerated electrons were gradually released to react with O2 through the two-electron O2 reduction process, resulting in the continuous disinfection of Escherichia coli bacteria in the dark through the photocatalytic "memory" effect. No deterioration of their cycling H2O2 production performance in the dark was observed, which verified their stable photocatalytic "memory" effect.


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Post-illumination activity of Bi2WO6 in the dark from the photocatalytic "memory" effect

Show Author's information Weiyi YANGaYan CHENbShuang GAOaLicheng SANGb,cRuoge TAOdCaixia SUNeJian Ku SHANGbQi LIa( )
School of Materials Science and Engineering, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China
Shenyang National Laboratory for Materials Science, Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenyang 110016, China
School of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Science and Technology of China, Shenyang 110016, China
Northeast Yucai School, Shenyang 110179, China
Key Laboratory of New Metallic Functional Materials and Advanced Surface Engineering in Universities of Shandong and School of Mechanical and Electronic Engineering, Qingdao Binhai University, Qingdao 266555, China

† Weiyi Zhang and Yan Chen contributed equally to this work.

Abstract

Photocatalysts with the photocatalytic "memory" effect could resolve the intrinsic activity loss of traditional photocatalysts when the light illumination is turned off. Due to the dual requirements of light absorption and energy storage/release functions, most previously reported photocatalysts with the photocatalytic "memory" effect were composite photocatalysts of two phase components, which may lose their performance due to gradually deteriorated interface conditions during their applications. In this work, a simple solvothermal process was developed to synthesize Bi2WO6 microspheres constructed by aggregated nanoflakes. The pure phase Bi2WO6 was found to possess the photocatalytic "memory" effect through the trapping and release of photogenerated electrons by the reversible chemical state change of W component in the (WO4)2- layers. When the illumination was switched off, Bi2WO6 microspheres continuously produced H2O2 in the dark as those trapped photogenerated electrons were gradually released to react with O2 through the two-electron O2 reduction process, resulting in the continuous disinfection of Escherichia coli bacteria in the dark through the photocatalytic "memory" effect. No deterioration of their cycling H2O2 production performance in the dark was observed, which verified their stable photocatalytic "memory" effect.

Keywords:

Bi2WO6, photocatalytic "memory" effect, energy storage/release, activity in the dark, stability
Received: 22 April 2020 Revised: 17 December 2020 Accepted: 19 December 2020 Published: 10 February 2021 Issue date: April 2021
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Publication history

Received: 22 April 2020
Revised: 17 December 2020
Accepted: 19 December 2020
Published: 10 February 2021
Issue date: April 2021

Copyright

© The Author(s) 2020

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 51672283, 51602316, and 51902271), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (Grant Nos. A1920502051907-15, 2682020CX07, and 2682020CX08), Sichuan Science and Technology Program (Grant Nos. 2020YJ0259 and 2020YJ0072), Joint Fund between Shenyang National Laboratory for Materials Science and State Key Laboratory of Advanced Processing and Recycling of Nonferrous Metals (Grant No. 18LHPY009), Liaoning Baiqianwan Talents Program, Natural Science Foundation of Liaoning Province of China (Grant No. 20180510042), and the Natural Science Foundation of Shandong Province, China (Grant No. ZR2017MEM017).

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