Mixed solid system involving cerium and zirconium titanate (ZrTiO4) have been prepared using the sol-gel technique. Both X-ray diffraction and DFT calculations firmly indicate that, till a doping level of 10 mol%, cerium ions are dissolved in the titanate matrix (which has the scrutynite structure, analogous to those of the main TiO2 polymorphs) occupying the cationic sites and progressively altering its cell parameters. Cerium is hosted in the matrix both in the form of Ce4+ and Ce3+ ions (XPS results). The trivalent state seems to be favoured even though the state of the dopant depends on the treatment undergone by the material. DFT calculations describe the intra-band gap states formed in both cases and the strong localisation of the single electron in the case of Ce3+ (4f1). Differently from the case of Ce doped ZrO2, that shows photoactivity in the visible light because of the presence of cerium, the doped titanate is inactive in the same conditions. Under UV–vis illumination charge separation occurs (EPR results) and the low-loading doped systems (0.5%, 1%) form OH radicals, detected by spin trapping, more efficiently than the pristine matrix. The absence of photoactivity in the visible range is interpreted in terms of the detrimental role (charge recombination) played by both the occupied intra-band gap states associated to Ce3+ and the corresponding oxygen vacancies formed in the lattice by charge compensation.

Structural, electronic and photochemical properties of cerium-doped zirconium titanate

Agnoli, Stefano;PACCHIONI, GIANFRANCO;Giamello, Elio
2018

Abstract

Mixed solid system involving cerium and zirconium titanate (ZrTiO4) have been prepared using the sol-gel technique. Both X-ray diffraction and DFT calculations firmly indicate that, till a doping level of 10 mol%, cerium ions are dissolved in the titanate matrix (which has the scrutynite structure, analogous to those of the main TiO2 polymorphs) occupying the cationic sites and progressively altering its cell parameters. Cerium is hosted in the matrix both in the form of Ce4+ and Ce3+ ions (XPS results). The trivalent state seems to be favoured even though the state of the dopant depends on the treatment undergone by the material. DFT calculations describe the intra-band gap states formed in both cases and the strong localisation of the single electron in the case of Ce3+ (4f1). Differently from the case of Ce doped ZrO2, that shows photoactivity in the visible light because of the presence of cerium, the doped titanate is inactive in the same conditions. Under UV–vis illumination charge separation occurs (EPR results) and the low-loading doped systems (0.5%, 1%) form OH radicals, detected by spin trapping, more efficiently than the pristine matrix. The absence of photoactivity in the visible range is interpreted in terms of the detrimental role (charge recombination) played by both the occupied intra-band gap states associated to Ce3+ and the corresponding oxygen vacancies formed in the lattice by charge compensation.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3296917
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