Photocatalytic reductive applications of C-doped ZrO2/PANI composite towards Cr(VI)

Tarisai Velempini, Eswaran Prabakaran, Kriveshini Pillay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Carbon doped zirconium oxide polyaniline, C-ZrO2/PANI was synthesised for application in the photocatalytic reduction of Cr(VI) under visible light irradiation. The carbon doping agent applied was carboxymethyl cellulose. C-ZrO2 was obtained via the precipitation method. Coupling of the polyaniline to the C-ZrO2 occurred by in situ oxidative polymerization to obtain the C-ZrO2/PANI composite. XPS and EDS showed presence of C, Zr, O, N in the C-ZrO2/PANI sample. The physiochemical characteristics of the photocatalyst such as a large surface area of 31,47 m2/g, good charge separation were important aspects in the adsorption and subsequent Cr(VI) reduction. Band edge positions for the C-ZrO2/PANI deduced from UV–Vis DRS and Mott-Schottky plot showed that the lowest unoccupied molecular orbital (LUMO) of PANI was below the C-ZrO2 conduction band (CB). Further, photogenerated electrons from LUMO were transferred to C-ZrO2 CB and were involved in the generation of superoxide radicals, O2, which were critical in Cr(VI) reduction to Cr(III). Comparably the photocatalyst, C-ZrO2/PANISDS, prepared in the presence of surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) indicated diminished photocatalytic reduction of Cr(VI). From the photocatalytic results, performances of the photocatalysts were in the order C-ZrO2/PANI > PANI > C-ZrO2/PANISDS. Photocatalytic results revealed that 100% of 20 mg/L Cr(VI) was reduced by C-ZrO2/PANI within 70 mins at pH 2. The first order reaction rate constant was 0.0309 min−1. The photocatalyst can be reused for 4 cycles without excessive loss of efficiency and with maintained stability.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113737
JournalJournal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2022


  • Carbon doped zirconia oxide
  • Photocatalytic
  • Polyaniline
  • Reduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy


Dive into the research topics of 'Photocatalytic reductive applications of C-doped ZrO2/PANI composite towards Cr(VI)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this