Cotton fabrics decorated with nanostructured Ag/AgX (X:Cl,Br) as reusable solar light-mediated bactericides: A comparative study

In this study, cotton fabrics decorated with Ag/AgCl and Ag/AgBr NPs were produced by a simple hydrothermal treatment using AgCl and AgBr as precursors. Their morphological features as well as, chemical composition and structural and luminescence properties were compared. Their water disinfection aptitude against E. coli and S. aureus was also investigated under solar illumination in batch as well asin dynamic conditions. The highest activity was observed for Cot-Ag/AgCl with a quasi-complete inactivation of E. coli and S. aureus(1.5 × 107cfu mL?1) within 15 min illumination. Disinfection efficiency under continuous flow was also tested using a home-made photoreactor and the cotton fabrics with the most efficient photocatalyst (Ag/AgCl). It has shown to be efficient at least for 10 cycles revealing the robustness of the functionalization. The mechanism of photocatalytic disinfection was explained in terms of the surface plasmon resonance (SPR) induced by the presence of Ag NPs, the resulting holes, h+, being one of the most intervenient species in the disinfection mechanism. The difference in the photocatalytic efficiency between AgCl and AgBr functionalized cotton was attributed to differences in the carriers (h+and e-) lifetime. This work provides a proof of concept for the potential applicability of Cot-Ag/AgCl or Cot-Ag/AgBr for in-flow potabilization of water under solar illumination.

» Author: Wafa Cheikhrouhou, Ana Maria Ferraria, Ana Maria Botelho do Rego, I. Ferreira Machado, L.F. Vieira Ferreira, Sami Boufi

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This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement Nº 737882.


            

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