Photocatalytic Methods for Contaminant Degradation and Hydrogen Production in Waste Water Using Solar/UV Radiation


  • Dipendra Wagle
  • Robby Sanders


"Photocatalyst-based advanced oxidation processes have been reported as a useful treatment approach for waste water decontamination purposes including for removal of medicines, organic chemicals, and for bacterial disinfection among others. The technique is also beneficial for hydrogen production simultaneously to the elimination of contaminants. The optimization and upscaling of this technology for large scale implementation has established big challenges for environmental engineers.

Most of the photocatalytic methods for contaminant degradation are based on the TiO2 semiconductor photocatalyst which is readily available, environmentally friendly, and possesses significant photocatalytic activity. The big challenge associated with this is that it is photo-responsive only in the ultraviolet region that comprises only 4% of the solar spectrum falling on Earth. Therefore, synthesis of a new photocatalyst or, alternatively, the modification of the TiO2 for a cost-efficient visible-light-responsive photocatalyst that is capable of both mineralizing contaminants and producing hydrogen is a desirable project goal. For example, modification of TiO2 crystals by doping with other co-catalysts such as CdS, MoS, etc. and novel metals is expected to be an excellent potential approach for this purpose so that the composite system potentially will display a broad spectrum for photoresponse.

This research focuses on developing a general technique to synthesize an efficient CdS doped TiO2 photocatalyst for carbamazepine degradation. In addition, structural characterization of this catalyst and the evaluation of the kinetics of photocatalytic degradation in UV and visible light will be performed. Comparisons with current literature values for validation of the catalytic material will be also included."