Development of NiO-Co3O4 nano-ceramic composite materials as novel photocatalysts to degrade organic contaminants present in water

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Nanosciences and Technology, Karunya University, Coimbatore - 641 114, India

2 Department of Chemistry, Karunya University,Coimbatore – 641 114, India


Novel ceramic oxides have been increasingly focused in recent years because of their potential
applications in environmental purification especially to treat organic contaminants present in water. In this
research work, a set of NiO-Co3O4 nano-ceramic composite materials were prepared by a simple reflux
condensation method using nickel acetate / cobalt acetate as precursor salts, sodium monododecyl sulphate
(SDS) as a surfactant and N,N-Dimethylformamide (DMF) as solvent. The prepared nano-ceramic composites
were calcined at different temperatures such as 200, 400, 600 and 800oC for 2 hours each to get the phase pure
product. XRD results revealed that all the samples indexed to a cubic crystalline geometry. The presence of
metal-oxygen bond (Ni-O and Co-O) was confirmed by FTIR spectroscopy. The presence of Ni, Co and O in
the sample was confirmed by EDAX analysis. The existence of particles in nanometer range was shown by
SEM. The particle size analysis by light scattering method also confirmed the particles in nanometer range
(approximately 270 nm) in all the three samples. The optical behavior of the materials was studied by UV-Vis
and PL spectrophotometer. Photocatalytic activity studies carried out with NiO-Co3O4 (1.0:1.0) nano-ceramic
composites in presence of organic dyes such as, rhodamine B and methyl orange dyes under UV light
irradiation (for two hours) resulted in the degradation of 77% and 84% respectively.