Engineering HDR Seminar Series 11, 2013: Study, Design and Development of Graphene-Based TiO2 Photocatalysts and its Application in the Conversion of Carbon Dioxide

Ms Tan Lling Lling, postgraduate (Chem Eng)

Date: 2013-02-27
Time: 14:00 to 15:00
Venue: Engineering Meeting Room 1, 5-4-22


The increase in global atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) has aroused considerable public concern due to its effect in global warming. Although great strides have been made to reduce CO2 emissions, its storage and disposal is an ongoing problem. Therefore, the ability to harness the power of CO2 on a large scale and integrate it back into the utilization cycle as a sustainable form of energy production is highly desirable. The photocatalytic reduction of CO2 to produce hydrocarbon resources is deemed as a promising strategy in reducing CO2 emissions and resolving the energy crisis. However, the state-of-the-art technology is far from being optimal and there are still several breakthroughs to be made before it can be considered as an economically viable process. The problem is that the vast majority of photocatalysts exhibit low photoresponse towards visible-light, thus resulting in low photoconversion efficiencies. TiO2, which is by far the most researched photocatalytic material, also suffers from a narrow light-response range and can only be excited under UV-light irradiation. A variety of strategies have been used to enhance the photocatalytic performance of TiO2 photocatalysts, the most recent being the incorporation of carbon nanomaterials to form carbon–TiO2 composites. Owing to its superior electron mobility, high thermal conductivity and large specific surface area, graphene, in particular, is regarded as an extremely attractive component for the preparation of composite materials. The homogeneous anchoring of TiO2 photocatalysts onto graphene presents the opportunity to cover all mechanisms of photocatalytic enhancement, including rapid charge separation and an extended light absorption range. In this work, a highly efficient graphene-based TiO2 photocatalyst is developed for the photoreduction of CO2 into energy-bearing products under visible-light irradiation. The nanocomposite is expected to be developed as a robust means to address various energy and environmental-related issues. 

About the Speaker

Ms Tan Lling Lling received her BEng (Hons) in Chemical Engineering from Monash University Sunway Campus in 2011. She then continued her postgraduate studies in 2012 under the supervision of Dr Chai Siang Piao and Prof Abdul Rahman Mohamed. Her research focuses on the design and synthesis of highly efficient graphene-based semiconductor photocatalysts, which will be applied in the conversion of carbon dioxide into hydrocarbon products.