Fabrication of flexible sheets of Cu/CuO/Cu2O heterojunction nanodisks: A dominant performance of multiple photocatalytic sheets under natural sunlight

Periyayya Uthirakumar, M. Devendiran, Tae Hwan Kim, S. Kalaiarasan, In Hwan Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Development of immobilized photocatalyst on a flexible sheet is an urgent need for wastewater treatment in industry. A facile method is established to fabricate flexible Cu/CuO/Cu2O heterojunction nanodisks. The existence of both phases of CuO and Cu2O are identified by XRD, XPS and Raman spectroscopy. The combined CuO and Cu2O phases having different bandgaps are responsible for an improved photodegradation due to increased charge separation efficiency and an extended range of photoexcitation while decreasing recombination of photogenerated electrons and holes. For the first time, a single to several sheets of Cu/CuO/Cu2O heterojunction nanodisk are introduced to investigate the performance of photodegradation and continued to maximum of eight sheets. The superior photocatalytic performance of Cu/CuO/Cu2O heterojunction on rhodamine dye solution is observed and compared with recent reports related to the similar architecture. It is identified that the part of photoexcited electrons are consumed to oxidizes O2 to generate superoxide radicals due to the closer oxidation potential between O2/•O2 and Cu2O, besides the transfer to the conduction band of CuO. Hence, the proposed flexible photocatalytic sheet benefits for the stable and continuous usage in a large-scale process to degrade toxic pollutants without sacrificing their photocatalytic activity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number114652
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering B: Solid-State Materials for Advanced Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Oct


  • Cu/CuO/CuO heterojunction
  • CuO nanodisk
  • Flexible sheet
  • Nanocrystalline materials
  • Optical materials and properties
  • Sunlight photocatalyst

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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