Simultaneous and synergistic conversion of dyes and heavy metal ions in aqueous TiO2 suspensions under visible-light illumination

Hyunsook Kyung, Jaesang Lee, Wonyong Choi

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279 Citations (Scopus)


This study reports synergistic effects in the simultaneous conversion of dyes and heavy metal ions in aqueous TiO2/dye/metal ion systems (ternary components) under visible light (λ > 420 nm). TiO 2/Cr(VI)/Acid Orange 7 (AO7), TiO2/Cr(VI)/Rhodamine B (RhB), TiO2/Ag+/AO7, and TiO2/Ag +/RhB were chosen as test systems. Although dyes can be degraded in TiO2 suspensions under visible light, their removal rates were markedly enhanced in the presence of metal ions. Similarly, the reduction rates of metal ions in visible-light-illuminated TiO2 suspensions were negligible, but they were highly accelerated with dyes present. In particular, the synergistic effect in the ternary system of TiO2/Cr(VI)/AO7 was outstanding. The presence of dissolved oxygen increased the photoreduction rate of Cr(VI) despite the fact that Cr(VI) and O2 are competing electron acceptors. This is ascribed to in-situ photogenerated H2O2 from O2, which acts as a reductant of Cr(VI). RhB and Ag+ ions could be also converted simultaneously under visible light both in the presence and absence of TiO2. The visible-light-induced reduction of Ag+ did not occur at all in TiO2/Ag+ system, but it was enabled in both TiO2/Ag+/RhB and TiO 2/Ag+/AO7 to generate Ag particles. On the other hand, the binary systems of Cr(VI)/AO7, Ag+/AO7, and Ag+/RhB show significant visible-light activities for the conversion of both dye and metal ion. In this case, metal ions and dyes seem to form complexes that induce intracomplex electron transfers upon visible-light absorption. The Cr(VI)/RhB system, however, exhibited insignificant visible-light reactivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2376-2382
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Apr 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry


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