New molecular architectures toward highly efficient platinum doped titanium dioxide photocatalysts

CHED 1010

Frank A. Leibfarth, fleibfar@usd.edu and Ranjit T. Koodali. Department of Chemistry, University of South Dakota, 309 N. Pine, Vermillion, SD 57069
Platinum doped titanium dioxide (TiO2) nonmaterials have been synthesized by sequestering platinum nanoparticles in poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimers and incorporating these dendrimer-encapsulated nanoparticles into the sol-gel synthesis of TiO2. The sequestered nanoparticles show controlled size distribution and are monodispersed throughout the material. The Pt/TiO2 materials were tested for their photocatalytic ability under ultraviolet radiation for the degradation of a model pollutant, phenol. The degradation was followed by HPLC and a number of characteristic degradation products were characterized, most prominently benzoquinone. The photocatalysis showed outstanding results as compared to commercial TiO2 materials. The methodology for metal dispersion in inorganic oxide matrixes and the high photocatalytic activities make these Pt/TiO2 catalysts attractive for use in groundwater cleanup and photovoltaic cells.