Photocatalytic performance of melt-electrospun polypropylene fabric decorated with TiO2 nanoparticles


JOURNAL OF NANOPARTICLE RESEARCH, vol.16, no.9, 2014 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Recently, nanomaterials, especially titanium-based nanomaterials, have a great potential for decolorization of textile dye effluents. In this article, the nanofibrillar filters functionalized with titanium nanoparticle (nTi) were designed to improve dyeing wastewater decolorization. Pristine polypropylene (PP) and nTi-PP nanocomposite nonwovens were produced as a photocatalyzer by melt-electrospinning process. The average diameter of pristine PP- and nTi-PP nanocomposite melt-electrospun fibers was found average as 700 +/- A 0.3 and 800 +/- A 0.4 nm, respectively. Before functionalization with nTi, the surface of fabrics was activated by a technique using glutaraldehyde (GA) and polyethyleneimine to improve decomposition activity. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) results revealed that titanium nanoparticles were deposited uniformly on the nanofibers. X-ray photon spectroscopy (XPS) results confirmed the presence of titanium nanoparticles and generation of amine groups after modification. Photocatalytic performance of nTi-loaded pristine and nanocomposite melt-electrospun filters was investigated by using methyl orange (MO) as a model compound. The decolorization experiments were carried out by varying initial dye concentration (10, 20, 40 mg/L), pH (2, 5, and 9), and loaded TiO2 amount (1 and 2 %). According to photocatalytic decolarization test results, nTi-loaded GA-treated pristine or nTi-PP nanocomposite fabric filter has better properties compared to GA-untreated group from point of photocatalytic efficiency, especially over 90 % decolorization efficiency at GA-treated pristine and nTi-PP composite PP fabrics. The complete decolarization of MO was observed at pH value of 5, photocatalyst concentration of 20 mg/L, and 1 % nTi-loading after 3 h. The results show that surface activated PP nonwovens, which is introduced Ti nanoparticles into and onto the structure, a good photocatalytic activity.