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Salihah Alkhobrani, Hossein Bayahia, Fares T. Alshorifi,
Volume 20, Issue 3 (September 2023)

In this study, CoFe2O4  (CoF) and ZnFe2O4 (ZnF) photocatalysts were successfully prepared by a facile and simple chemical precipitation method for degradation of methylene blue (MB) and methyl orange (MO) dyes under direct sunlight irradiation. The obtained ferrites were then characterized through XRD, TEM, EDS, UV-vis, and SEM. XRD and TEM results exhibited cubic nanostructures with sizes ranging from 9 to 16 nm and 11 to 18 nm for ZnF and CoF, respectively. SEM images showed homogenous, porous flat surfaces. EDS spectra confirmed the successful synthesis of ZnF and CoF nanostructures with high purity. UV-vis spectra results of MB and MO dyes showed maximum sunlight absorbance in the absence of ZnF and CoF, while a regular decrease in the sunlight absorbance was observed in the presence of ZnF and CoF within 15-60 min. The UV-vis results also showed that ZnF had higher photocatalytic activity than CoF. The experimental findings showed that the highest % degradation was 92.89% and 96.89% for MO and MB dyes, respectively, over ZnF compared to CoF photocatalyst (87.55% and 88.41% for MO and MB, respectively). These findings confirm that porous ZnF and CoF nanostructures are critical in promoting the degradation of dyes under sunlight instead of UV-vis light lamps that consume/require electrical energy.

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