Suyana Panneri, Priyanka Ganguly, Midhun Mohan, Balagopal N. Nair, Abdul Azeez Peer Mohamed, Krishna G. Warrier, and U.S. Hareesh*
Environmental remediation employing semiconducting materials offer a greener solution for pollution control. Herein, we report the development of high surface area porous architecture of C3N4 nanosheets by a simple aqueous spray drying process. g-C3N4nanosheets obtained by the thermal decomposition of urea-thiourea mixture are spray granulated to microspheres using 2 wt % poly vinyl alcohol (PVA) as binder. The post granulation thermal oxidation treatment resulted in insitu doping of carbon leading to improved photophysical properties compared to pristine g-C3N4. The C3N4 granules with surface area values of 150 m2/g rendered repetitive adsorption of tetracycline antibiotic (∼75 % in 60 min) and the extended absorption in the visible region facilitated complete photocatalytic degradation upon sunlight irradiation (>95 % in 90 min). The delocalized π bonds generated after carbon doping and the macro-meso porous architecture created by the granulation process aided high adsorption capacity (70 mg/g). The photoregenerable, bifunctional materials herein obtained can thus be employed for the adsorption and subsequent degradation of harmful organic pollutants without any secondary remediation processes.
ACS Sustainable Chem. Eng., 2017, 5 (2), pp 1610–1618