Facile Synthesis of Viral Templated Photocatalysts for Environmental Applications.
Burchell, Doreen Katherine.
- As petroleum based fuels are becoming more difficult to locate and extract, alternate sources of energy as well as more efficient methods for their extraction require immediate attention. Water splitting is a promising alternative for the production of hydrogen fuel from light and water. Titanium dioxide is a common, non-toxic and inexpensive photoactive material capable of catalyzing this reaction. ... read moreIn this experiment, genetically modified tobacco mosaic virus assembled on functionalized glass served as a template for the formation of nanoscale titanium dioxide particles through an adsorption-hydrolysis cycle reaction of titanium dioxide precursors. Characterization of the surface composition of the material through XPS showed the material consisted of majority titanium dioxide and some titanium trioxide with oxygen and titanium in a 2:1 ratio. Examination of surface morphology through AFM revealed particle sizes increased with increasing cycle number. Tunable virus surface assembly density and particle size offer two dimensions of control with which the photocatalytically active titanium dioxide is synthesized in the pursuit toward fabrication of more efficient catalytic materials.read less