Robust Co-catalytic performance of nanodiamonds loaded on WO3 for the decomposition of volatile organic compounds under visible light

Hyoung Il Kim, Hee Na Kim, Seunghyun Weon, Gun Hee Moon, Jae Hong Kim, Wonyong Choi

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87 Citations (Scopus)


Proper co-catalysts (usually noble metals), combined with semiconductor materials, are commonly needed to maximize the efficiency of photocatalysis. Search for cost-effective and practical alternatives for noble-metal co-catalysts is under intense investigation. In this work, nanodiamond (ND), which is a carbon nanomaterial with a unique sp3(core)/sp2(shell) structure, was combined with WO3 (as an alternative co-catalyst for Pt) and applied for the degradation of volatile organic compounds under visible light. NDs-loaded WO3 showed a highly enhanced photocatalytic activity for the degradation of acetaldehyde (∼17 times higher than bare WO) which is more efficient than other well-known co-catalysts (Ag, Pd, Au, and CuO) loaded onto WO3 and comparable to Pt-loaded WO3. Various surface modifications of ND and photoelectochemical measurements revealed that the graphitic carbon shell (sp2) on the diamond core (sp3) plays a crucial role in charge separation and the subsequent interfacial charge transfer. As a result, ND/WO3 showed much higher production of OH radicals than bare WO3 under visible light. Since ND has a highly transparent characteristic, the light shielding that is often problematic with other carbon-based co-catalysts was considerably lower with NDs-loaded WO3. As a result, the photocatalytic activity of NDs/WO3 was higher than that of WO3 loaded with other carbon-based co-catalysts (graphene oxide or reduced graphene oxide). A range of spectroscopic and photo(electro)chemical techniques were systematically employed to investigate the properties of NDs-loaded WO3. ND is proposed as a cost-effective and practical nanomaterial to replace expensive noble-metal co-catalysts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8350-8360
Number of pages11
JournalACS Catalysis
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Dec 2

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was financially supported by the Global Research Laboratory (GRL) Program (No. NRF-2014K1A1A2041044) and KCAP (Sogang Univ.) (No. 2009-0093880), which were funded by the Korea Government (MSIP) through the National Research Foundation (NRF).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Chemical Society.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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