Mesoporous TiO2 Comprising Small, Highly Crystalline Nanoparticles for Efficient CO2 Reduction by H2O

Tao Zhang, Jingxiang Low, Katherine Koh, Jiaguo Yu, Tewodros Asefa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


The conversion of CO2 into hydrocarbon fuels with H2O using low-cost photocatalysts can offer a sustainable route to meet some of our energy needs, besides being able to contribute to the solutions of global warming. In this work, a series of highly crystalline mesoporous titanium dioxide (TiO2) photocatalysts are synthesized via a simple template-free synthetic method. The synthesis involves preparation of titanium glycolate microspheres (TGMs), then hydrolysis of the TGMs in boiling water under ambient pressure, and finally calcination of the products in air. The hydrolysis step is found to play a crucial role in the formation of TiO2 microspheres comprising a network of small anatase grains. The hydrolysis of the TGMs is also found to considerably inhibit the possible phase transformation of anatase to rutile during the subsequent high-temperature crystallization process. The resulting materials have good crystallinity and efficient charge carrier separation capabilities, as well as large specific surface areas, and thus large density of accessible catalytically active sites. These unique structural features enable these materials to exhibit high photocatalytic activities for the conversion of CO2 with H2O into hydrocarbon fuels (CH4) and to show much better catalytic activities than that of the commercial photocatalyst Degussa P25 TiO2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)531-540
Number of pages10
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2 2018


  • Carbon dioxide reduction
  • Methane
  • Photocatalysis
  • Synthetic fuel
  • Titanium dioxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

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