Photocatalytic Activity of Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles Immobilized in the Polymer Network of Polyacrylamide Hydrogel
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Composite hydrogels based on polyacrylamide immobilized nanoparticles of commercial (P25 brand) titanium dioxide and of titanium dioxide nanoparticles prepared by electric explosion of a wire were synthesized. The enthalpy of interaction at the polyacrylamide/TiO2 interface was determined by microcalorimetry using the thermochemical cycle method. Interaction of polyacrylamide polymer chains with the surface of TiO2 nanoparticles is energetically unfavorable. The absence of interactions between the hydrogel polymer network and surface of TiO2 nanoparticles favors manifestation of the UV-induced photocatalytic activity of TiO2 nanoparticles immobilized in the hydrogel. Immobilization in the polyacrylamide hydrogel matrix decreases the photocatalytic activity of P25 brand TiO2 nanoparticles, but does not affect the photocatalytic activity of titanium dioxide nanoparticles prepared by the electric explosion method. The photocatalytic activity of TiO2 nanoparticles immobilized in the bulk of polyacrylamide hydrogel evaluated by the decomposition of Methyl Orange dye is controlled by the diffusion rate of the dye molecules into the bulk of the hydrogel and depends also on the aggregation of TiO2 nanoparticles in the hydrogel matrix.
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