Rare earth doping ions can improve the spectral response of this semiconductor to the visible region. This work evaluated the dopant effect of rare earth ions such as La, Ce, Nd, Pr, Sm, Eu, and Gd in titania for the solar photodegradation of Diuron and methyl parathion. The increase in the content up to 0.5% of dopants decreases photoactivity due to the formation of photo-generated electron-hole pair recombination centers. The catalysts calcined at 500°C presented only the anatase crystalline phase and the samples doped with La and Ce at 0.1 and 0.3% were the most active in diuron solar degradation; however, when the temperature of the thermal treatment increased to 800°C, mixtures of crystalline phases were presented. The catalyst with the highest anatase content showed the best performance. The materials calcined at 500°C with better performance in diuron solar degradation were selected to to treat methyl parathion using solar light. Finally, under these conditions, an affinity was found for the dopant ions in titania and in the functional groups of the contaminating molecules (phenylurea and thiophosphate). Solar photodegradation of diuron was more effective with La and Ce, while for methyl parathion, it was Eu at 0.3%.
Part of the book: Water and Wastewater Treatment