Abstract

The development of new catalysts from abundant raw materials, generating attractive photocatalytic activity, constitutes a real challenge in the context of sustainable development concerns. In this setting, a dolomite was treated at 800 °C (D800) and then chemically modified by Ca(NO3)2 using a simple procedure (CaD800). The resulting materials were characterized by XRD, SEM, EDS, solid state UV spectroscopy, and used as catalysts of pentachlorophenol (PCP) degradation from aqueous solutions under UV light irradiation. The treatment of dolomite at 800 °C enabled a full decarbonation of CaMg(CO3)2, with formation of CaO, Ca(OH)2, and MgO. Additional CaO was generated after chemical treatment as revealed by EDS analysis whose the Ca/Mg ratio increased from 1.29 (D800) to 1.44 for CaD800. This CaO in aqueous medium hydrates by giving Ca(OH)2. CaD800 was found to be the best photocatalyst with a PCP degradation rate of 95% after only 1 h of treatment, for a CaD800/D800 ratio of degradation rate constant of 1.58. In this regard, we investigated the FTIR spectra of CaD800, PCP, and CaD800 loaded with PCP after degradation. We thus evidenced the involvement of Ca(OH)2 in the PCP degradation process. Catalytic activity was discussed through the contribution of OH radicals and electrodonation.

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