Journal of Materials Science, Vol.56, No.12, 7434-7450, 2021
Facile synthesis of silver decorated reduced graphene oxide@zinc oxide as ternary nanocomposite: an efficient photocatalyst for the enhanced degradation of organic dye under UV-visible light
Ternary combination of metal and metal oxide with reduced graphene oxide could be a novel potential photocatalyst towards highly efficient degradation of organic dyes under solar radiation. Herein, the novel ternary nanocomposite of silver nanoparticles with reduced graphene oxide and zinc oxide nanorods (Ag-rGO@ZnONR) were synthesized via in situ homogeneous coating of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) onto pre-assembled thermally reduced graphene oxide (rGO) encapsulated ZnO nanorods (ZnONR). The nanocomposite showed excellent aptitude towards the photodegradation of 2-chlorophenol (2-CP) under solar light irradiation. The Ag-rGO@ZnONR nanocomposite showed excellent UV-visible light harvesting due to the engineered reduced bandgap, and the Schottky barrier at the metal-semiconductor interface is expected to promote charge separation as also revealed by the optical calculations. The production of superoxide anions center dot O-2(-) and hydroxyl radicals (center dot OH)acting as substantial reducing and oxidizing agents and further pi - pi stacking interactions with the aromatic ring of 2-CP provided an ultimate foundation for its 100% degradation. The photocatalyst showed high reproducibility, and 94% efficiency was observed even after three cycles. XPS chemical state analysis of C1s, O1s, Zn2p, and Ag3d confirm the variation of C =C (sp(2)), C-O, O= C-OH, and localization of Ag nanoparticles with rGO by confiscating the oxygen-comprising functional moieties which may be the possible reason for the enhanced photodegradation.