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Inhibit the formation of toxic methylphenolic by-products in photo-decomposition of formaldehyde-toluene/xylene mixtures by Pd cocatalyst on TiO2

Wu, Qiqi, Ye, Jiani, Qiao, Wei, Li, Yongwang, Niemantsverdriet, J.W. (Hans), Richards, Emma, Pan, Feng and Su, Ren 2021. Inhibit the formation of toxic methylphenolic by-products in photo-decomposition of formaldehyde-toluene/xylene mixtures by Pd cocatalyst on TiO2. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental 291 , 120118. 10.1016/j.apcatb.2021.120118

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Abstract

Photocatalytic removal of single volatile organic compounds (VOCs) has been widely investigated; however, photodecomposition of VOC mixtures has been rarely addressed, which may bring safety doubts in indoor air purification due to possible formation of harmful compounds. Here we show that in photocatalytic oxidation of formaldehyde–toluene and formaldehyde–xylene mixtures, the introduction of Pd cocatalyst on TiO2 photocatalyst successfully inhibits the formation of toxic methylphenols, thus promoting the complete mineralization of VOC mixtures into CO2 via the harmless benzaldehyde intermediates. Mechanistic analysis reveals that the loading of Pd cocatalyst effectively removes the inherent surface −OH groups of TiO2, which significantly promotes the activation of O2 into radical dotOH radicals. The Pd cocatalyst also directs the radical dotOH radicals to attack the methyl group instead of the aromatic ring for the formation of benzaldehyde and its further oxidation to CO2, thus yielding a better overall photocatalytic performance.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Chemistry
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0926-3373
Funders: EPSRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 19 March 2021
Date of Acceptance: 4 March 2021
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2022 17:04
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/139928

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