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In chemistry, photocatalysis is the acceleration of a photoreaction in the presence of a catalyst. In catalysed photolysis, light is absorbed by an adsorbed substrate. In photogenerated catalysis the photocatalytic activity (PCA) depends on the ability of the catalyst to create electron–hole pairs, which generate free radicals (hydroxyl ions; OH-) able to undergo secondary reactions. Its comprehension has been made possible ever since the discovery of water electrolysis by means of the titanium dioxide. Commercial application of the process is called Advanced Oxidation Process(es) (AOP) [1]. There are several methods of achieving AOP's, that can but do not necessarily involve TiO2 or even the use of UV. Generally the defining factor is the production and use of the hydroxyl ion.


  • Conversion of water to hydrogen gas by water splitting photocatalysis [1]. An efficient photocatalyst in the UV range is based on a Sodium tantalum oxide NaTaO3 with cocatalyst nickel oxide. The surface of the Sodium tantalum oxide crystals is grooved with so called nanosteps that is a result of doping with Lanthanum (3-15 nm range, see nanotechnology). The NiO particles which facilitate hydrogen gas evolution are present on the edges, the oxygen gas evolves from the grooves.
  • Use of titanium dioxide in self cleaning coatings. Free radicals [1]generated from TiO2 oxidize organic matter. [2]
  • Oxidation of organic contaminants using magnetic particles that are coated with titanium dioxide nanoparticles and agitated using a magnetic field while being exposed to UV light [2].

External source

  • [1] Strategies for the Development of Visible-light-driven Photocatalysts for Water Splitting Akihiko Kudo, Hideki Kato1 and Issei Tsuji Chemistry Letters Vol. 33 (2004) , No. 12 p.1534
  • [2] Kostedt, W. L., IV.; Drwiega, J; Mazyck, D. W.; Lee, S.-W.; Sigmund, W.; Wu, C.-Y.; Chadik, P. Magnetically agitated photocatalytic reactor for photocatalytic oxidation of aqueous phase organic pollutants. Environmental Science & Technology 2005, 39(20), 8052-8056.


  1. ^ Snapcat Photo Catalytic Oxidation with Titanium Dioxide (2005). CaluTech UV Air. Retrieved on 2006-12-05.

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Photocatalysis". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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