© 2018 The Author(s) Designing new catalysts that can efficiently utilize multiple energy sources can contribute to solving the current challenges of environmental remediation and increasing energy demands. In this work, we fabricated single-crystalline BiFeO3 (BFO)nanosheets and nanowires that can successfully harness visible light and mechanical vibrations and utilize them for degradation of organic pollutants. Under visible light both BFO nanostructures displayed a relatively slow reaction rate. However, under piezocatalysis both nanosheets and nanowires exhibited higher reaction rates in comparison with photocatalytic degradation. When both solar light and mechanical vibrations were used simultaneously, the reaction rates were elevated even further, with the BFO nanowires degrading 97% of RhB dye within 1 hr (k-value 0.058 min−1). The enhanced degradation under mechanical vibrations can be attributed to the promotion of charge separation caused by the internal piezoelectric field of BFO. BFO nanowires also exhibited good reusability and versatility toward degrading four different organic pollutants.
- Environmental Nanotechnology