In this paper, a method for cost-effective production of nanostructured zirconium titanate (ZrTiO4) fibers is introduced. In this method, ZrTiO4 fibers were synthesized by a sol-gel technique using cellulose fibers as the template. The resultant structures were studied by transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) analyses. The photocatalytic activity of the fiber was compared to that of ZrTiO4 powders prepared by the same sol-gel method, in dark and under UVA and UVC radiations. According to the results, after calcination accompanied by the template removal, the ZrTiO4 fiber consists of uniformly-deposited, crystalline nanoparticles. This nanostructured fiber exhibited a higher surface area and a higher porosity compared with the ZrTiO4 powders, resulting in considerably higher photocatalytic characteristics, as confirmed by the experiment. The large surface area and the enhanced photocatalytic activity of the ZrTiO4 fibers also offer applications in sensors and bioactive films.
- Nanostructured materials
- Sol-gel processes