Highly porous ZnO nanoflakes were successfully prepared using a microwave-assisted hydrothermal method. The presence of aluminum changes the environment of the preparation reaction, which controlled the crystallographic orientation. The unique morphology and properties of ZnO nanoflakes may be due to the effect of microwave irradiation and the ambient condition. The approach is very simple and there is rapid growth of around 3 µm ZnO within 30 min. The mechanism of the construction of unique ZnO nanoflake growth using the present approach is proposed. Hence, the prospective performance of ethanol vapor sensing for the rapid growth of ZnO porous nanostructures was investigated.
Mesoporous TiO2 hollow spherical nanostructures with high surface areas were successfully prepared using a microwave method. The prepared hollow spheres had a size range between 200 and 500 nm. The spheres consisted of numerous smaller TiO2 nanoparticles with an average diameter of 8 nm. The particles had an essentially mesoporous structure, with a pore size in the range of 2-50 nm. The results confirmed that the synthesised of anatase TiO2 nanoparticles with specific surface area approximately 172.3 m2 g-1. The effect of ultraviolet and visible light irradiation and catalyst dosage on the TiO2 photocatalytic activity was studied by measuring the degradation rate of methylene blue. The maximum dye degradation performances with low catalyst loading (30 mg) were 99% and 63.4% using the same duration of ultraviolet and visible light irradiation, respectively (120 min).