Journal of Hazardous Materials, Vol.289, 140-148, 2015
In situ growing directional spindle TiO2 nanocrystals on cellulose fibers for enhanced Pb2+ adsorption from water
TiO2/cellulose nanocomposite was synthesized by in situ generation of titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanocrystals on cellulose fibers (CF) via facile hydrolysis of TiOSO4. Cellulose was intended as a scaffold to immobilize TiO2 nanoparticles (NPs), but turned out surprisingly to be also a chemical template that directed the crystal growth. As a result, spindle rutile TiO2 crystals were nicely formed on the surface of cellulose. These crystals were further controlled to disperse uniformly without agglomeration for better use of their surface area to adsorb heavy metals. The TiO2/CF composite showed enhanced adsorption capacity, good regenerability and selectivity for lead (Pb2+) removal. In addition, the composite fibers were readily fabricated into a nonwoven filter bed through which dynamic filtration experiment was conducted. A 12-fold increase in filtered bed volume was achieved for TiO2/CF bed compared with pure CF bed before breakthrough took place. This work provides a green pathway for fabricating low cost, high efficiency and engineering application possible nanosorbents for water decontamination. (C) 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.