D. Lu, J.W.J. Loh, H. Lau, S.F.Y. Li
National University of Singapore,
Keywords: carbon nitride, photocatalytic degradation, endocrine disrupting chemicals
Summary:Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have been proven to have negative health consequences in humans, interfering with normal hormone activities by altering hormone levels, blocking and/or increasing hormone production and metabolism. Due to its potential application in the degradation of organic pollutants and the harvesting of renewable solar energy, photocatalytic degradation has emerged as one of the most promising technologies for dealing with EDCs in recent years. In particular, carbon nitride (CN) has emerged as a promising metal-free photocatalyst due to its suitable bandgap, low cost of starting material, facile preparation, high chemical stability and pollution-free features. The photocatalytic efficiency of carbon nitride microspheres with carbon doping generated using a one-step solvothermal technique was considerably increased in the destruction of endocrine disrupting compounds under visible light. The as-prepared samples had a reduced bandgap and lower photogenerated charge carrier recombination, allowing for effective visible light harvesting and improved performance in photocatalytic destruction of endocrine disrupting compounds. In addition, the band structures of the samples and EDC degradation mechanisms are investigated and hypothesized, revealing that superoxide radicals are the key active species engaged in the photocatalysts' degradation of EDCs.