TiO2 immobilised on biopolymer nanofibers for the removal of bisphenol A and diclofenac from water

Recently electrospinning has gained significant attention due to unique possibilities to produce novel natural nanofibers and fabrics with controllable pore structure. The present study focuses on the fabrication of electrospun fibres based on gum karaya (GK), a natural tree gum, with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), and functionalization of the membrane with TiO2 nanoparticles with further methane plasma treatment. The GK/PVA/TiO2 membrane was analyzed with several techniques including: fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDX), and water contact angle, in order to characterize its morphological and physicochemical properties. The GK/PVA/TiO2 membrane was further successfully used for the degradation (under UV irradiation) of bisphenol A and diclofenac from aqueous solution. It was also observed that the degradation kinetics of these compounds are faster in comparison to the UV treatment alone.
biopolymer nanofibers, TiO2 nanoparticles, bisphenol A, diclofenac