Ultrafast Microwave Synthesis of WO3 Nanostructured Films for Solar Photocatalysis

Author: Daniela Nunes
Co-Authors: Daniela Nunes, Ana Rita Fragoso, Tomás Freire, Mariana Matias, Ana Carolina Marques, Rodrigo Ferrão de Paiva Martins, Elvira Fortunato, Ana Pimentel

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/pssr.202100196

Tungsten oxide (WO3) nanostructured films are synthesized under microwave radiation with synthesis times of 5 and 10 min, at 150 or 180 °C. This ultrafast synthesis route results in uniform and well-crystallized WO3 nanostructured films fully covering the substrates. A plate-like hierarchical structure is observed at 150 °C, and closely packed rectangular nanorods are formed at 180 °C. For both temperatures, the nanostructures self-organize into larger flower-like structures. The increase of the synthesis time from 5 to 10 min at 180 °C results in thicker films, reaching ≈4 μm. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Raman spectroscopy reveal that the films grow with the WO3 orthorhombic crystalline phase (o-WO3·0.33H2O). Photoluminescence (PL) measurements are performed for all the films, and their optical bandgaps are estimated through diffuse reflectance spectroscopy. The WO3 films have their photocatalytic activity assessed from rhodamine B (RhB) degradation under solar radiation. The Mott–Schottky plots confirm the n-type character of the films with the flat-band potentials and electron concentrations being estimated for the best photocatalysts. This study associates the eco-friendly, fast, and low-cost aspects of the synthesis route to the production of highly photoactive materials, which can effectively contribute to environmental remediation.

Link: Ultrafast Microwave Synthesis of WO3 Nanostructured Films for Solar Photocatalysis - Nunes - 2021 - physica status solidi (RRL) – Rapid Research Letters - Wiley Online Library

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