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International Journal of Photoenergy
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 921412, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/921412
Research Article

Highly Active Rare-Earth-Metal La-Doped Photocatalysts: Fabrication, Characterization, and Their Photocatalytic Activity

1Department of Chemistry, Anna University, Chennai 600 025, India
2Department of Applied Chemistry, Kanagawa Institute of Technology, 1030 Shimoogino, Atsugi, Kanagawa 243-0292, Japan

Received 15 July 2011; Revised 23 September 2011; Accepted 24 September 2011

Academic Editor: Jinlong Zhang

Copyright © 2012 S. Anandan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Efficient La-doped TiO2 photocatalysts were prepared by sol-gel method and extensively characterized by various sophisticated techniques. The photocatalytic activity of La-doped TiO2 was evaluated for the degradation of monocrotophos (MCPs) in aqueous solution. It showed higher rate of degradation than pure TiO2 for the light of wavelength of 254 nm and 365 nm. The rate constant of TiO2 increases with increasing La loading and exhibits maximum rate for 1% La loading. The photocatalytic activities of La-doped TiO2 are compared with La-doped ZnO; the reaction rate of the former is ~1.8 and 1.1 orders higher than the latter for the lights of wavelength 254 nm and 365 nm, respectively. The relative photonic efficiency of La-doped TiO2 is relatively higher than La-doped ZnO and commercial photocatalysts. Overall, La-doped TiO2 is the most active photocatalyst and shows high relative photonic efficiencies and high photocatalytic activity for the degradation of MCP. The enhanced photocatalytic activity of La-doped TiO2 is mainly due to the electron trapping by lanthanum metal ions, small particle size, large surface area, and high surface roughness of the photocatalysts.