Photocatalytic decolorization of methylene blue using zinc oxide supported on mesoporous silica nanoparticles


  • Anis Farhana Abdul Rahman
  • Ling Sy Mei
  • Aishah Abdul Jalil
  • Sugeng Triwahyono



ZnO, MSN, electrochemical, photocatalysis, methylene blue,


Various dyes that are used in textile, paper, cosmetics and plastics industries may produce harmful effects on the health of living organisms and the environment if not treated properly before being discharged into water bodies. Among many techniques, photocatalytic process is one of the promising treatment for these dyes. Zinc oxide (ZnO) is well-known comparable with TiO2 due to its unique properties and numerous advantages. While, mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) is an excellent solid support for heterogeneous catalysts due to its high surface area, thermal and mechanical stability, highly uniform pore distribution, tunable pore size, and unique hosting properties. Therefore, in this study, ZnO/MSN (ZM) catalysts were prepared and its physicochemical properties was characterized by X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). The catalyst was tested on the photodecolorization of methylene blue (MB) dye. The results showed that the interaction between ZnO and MSN support could enhanced the photocatalytic activity. The 0.5 g L-1 of 5ZM was found to give the highest degradation (80 %) of 10 mg L-1 of MB solution at pH 7 after 3 h under UV light irradiation. The photodecolorization followed the pseudo first-order Langmuir-Hinshelwood kinetic model. This study demonstrated that the prepared 5ZM has a potential to be used in photocatalytic degradation of various dyes as well as organic pollutants.


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