Rice grain-shaped Nitrogen-doped titanium dioxide (N-TiO2) nano/mesostructures were fabricated through a combination of sol-gel and electrospinning methods. As-spun nanofibers were continuous and upon thermal treatment at 500° C for 1 h in air, the continuous fibers break into rice grain-shaped TiO2 nanostructures of average diameter 50-80 nm. The nanostructures were characterized by spectroscopy, microscopy and powder X-ray diffraction. The rice grains consist of spherical particles of average diameter of ∼ 18 nm and with N doping, their average diameters decrease from ∼ 18 to ∼ 12 nm. The presence of N in the TiO2 lattice was confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The band-gap of TiO2 reduced from 3.19 eV to 2.83 eV upon increasing doping level of N from 0% to 5% (w/w), respectively. The N-TiO2 rice grains showed an enhanced UV light-assisted photocatalysis compared to pure TiO2 in the photodegradation of Alizarin Red S dye, an industrially important anthraquinone dye. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All Rights Reserved.
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V. J. Babu, Nair, A. S., Peining, Z., and Ramakrishna, S., “Synthesis and characterization of rice grains like Nitrogen-doped TiO 2 nanostructures by electrospinning-photocatalysis”, Materials Letters, vol. 65, pp. 3064-3068, 2011.