Enhancement of both optical and catalytic activity of copper-decorated porous silicon micro-particles
Laboratoire de Photovoltaïque, Centre de Recherches et des Technologies de l’Énergie, Technopole de Borj-Cédria, BP 95, Hammam-Lif 2050, Tunis, Tunisia
2 IEMN-DOAE- CNRS UMR 8520, Université polytechnique Hauts-de-France (UPHF), 59313 Valenciennes, France
3 Laboratory of Semi-conductors, Nano-structures and Advanced Technologies, Research and Technology Centre of Energy, Borj-Cedria Science and Technology Park, BP 95, 2050 Hammam-Lif, Tunisia
Received in final form: 4 February 2021
Accepted: 15 February 2021
Published online: 11 March 2021
To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to investigate the effect of chemical vapour etching (CVE) combined with copper decoration on both the optical and catalytic activities of silicon micro-particles (SiμPs). After exposure to acid vapours emanating from a hot solution of hydrogen fluoride/nitric acid (HF/HNO3), scanning electron microscope images of the treated powder show the formation of a porous, sponge-like structure on the sidewalls of SiμPs. Fourier transmission infra-red analysis shows the appearance of hydride bonds related to the formation of the porous structure. X-ray diffraction measurements and Raman spectroscopy show the good crystallinity of the samples. The strong photoluminescence properties of the obtained porous SiμPs (pSiμPs) reveal that the vapour etching process generated silicon nanocrystals within these particles. In this work, we have investigated the catalytic activity of copper nanoparticles (CuNPs) loaded on the surface of pSiμPs, in order to reduce the toxic compound 4-nitrophenol to 4-aminophenol. The results show excellent catalytic performance in very short times (less than 1 min).
© A. Hamdi et al., published by EDP Sciences, 2021
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