Abstract: Molecularly imprinted TiO2 (MIP-TiO2) nanoparticles with molecular recognition ability were prepared by solhydrothermal method. The hydrothermal temperature and time were optimized. MIP-TiO2 shows higher adsorption capacity and selectivity than the non-imprinted TiO2 (NIP-TiO2). Kinetics studies show that the adsorption of target molecules on MIP-TiO2 is fast. The good performance is attributed to (i) abundance of adsorption sites, (ii) good affinity of imprinted cavities towards target molecules, and (iii) geometric matching between target molecules and imprinted cavities. The photocatalytic activity of MIP/TiO2 (0.0167 min-1) is approximately four times that of NIP-TiO2 (0.00429 min-1). With a stable inorganic framework and active sites facilely released during regeneration, MIP-TiO2 is highly reusable.
Author keywords: molecular recognition, Molecularly imprinted photocatalyst, Sol-hydrothermal method, TiO2 nanoparticle