Synthesis and photoelectrochemical characterization of KZn2(HPO4)PO4: application to rhodamine B photodegradation under solar light

  • R. BagtacheEmail author
  • K. Abdmeziem
  • K. Dib
  • M. Trari
Original Paper


This work reports for the first time the study of the physical and photoelectrochemical properties of KZn2 (HPO4) PO4 nanopowder, prepared by hydrothermal route at 453 K. The as-synthesized compound crystallizes in a triclinic system (space group: P\(\bar{1}\)) with the lattice constants: a = 5.2060(2) Å, b = 8.8524(3) Å, c = 9.4039(3) Å, α = 96.9810(10)°, β = 101.7410(10)°, γ = 106.8130(10)° and a crystallite size of ~ 90 nm. The observed direct optical transition of 2.88 eV is due to O2−: 2p → Zn2+: 4s charge transfer; a further indirect transition at 5.80 eV is noticed. The electrical conductivity follows an exponential type law: σ = σo exp (− 0.08 eV/kT) in the temperature range (385–500 K), with an electronic hopping through mixed valences, while the negative thermo-power indicates n-type behavior. The capacitance measurement at pH ~ 7 gives a flat band potential of − 0.13 VSCE for the conduction band, which derives from Zn2+: 4s orbital and a donor density of 3.18 × 1019 cm−3. The electrochemical impedance spectroscopy shows the predominance of the faradic charge transfer. In order to support the photoelectrochemical results, the photocatalytic degradation of rhodamine B (RhB) in the presence of KZn2(HPO4)PO4, under solar light, is conducted. The results indicate 40% conversion after 300 min of irradiation time. A degradation mechanism is proposed to explain the mineralization. The photocatalytic RhB degradation obeys to a second-order kinetic model with a rate constant of 1.48 × 10−3 mol−1 L min−1.


KZn2(HPO4)PO4 nanopowder Hydrothermal synthesis Semiconductor Photoelectrochemical Rhodamine B 



The authors thank Dr D. Meziani for collecting crystallography data and identification of as-synthesized compound and MHESR (Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research), Algeria, for the financial support.

Supplementary material

13762_2018_1883_MOESM1_ESM.docx (50 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 50 kb)


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Electrochemistry-Corrosion, Metallurgy and Inorganic Chemistry, Faculty of ChemistryUSTHBAlgiersAlgeria
  2. 2.Laboratory of Storage and Valorization of Renewable Energies, Faculty of ChemistryUSTHBAlgiersAlgeria

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