Water borne pathogens present a threat to human health and their disinfection from water poses a challenge, prompting search for newer methods and newer materials. Disinfection of Gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli and Gram-positive coccal bacterium Staphylococcus aureus in aqueous matrix was achieved within 60 and 90 minutes respectively at 35⁰C using solar-photocatalysis mediated by sonochemically synthesized [email protected]
core-shell nanoparticles. The efficiency of the process increased with increase in temperature and at 55⁰C the disinfection could be achieved in 45 and 60 min respectively for the two bacteria. A new ultrasound assisted chemical precipitation technique was used for the synthesis of [email protected]
core-shell nanoparticles. The characteristics of the synthesized material were established using physical techniques. The material remained stable even at 400o C. Disinfection efficiency of the [email protected]
core-shell nanoparticles was confirmed in case of real world water samples from pond, river, municipal tap and was found to be better than that of pure ZnO and TiO2 (Degussa P25). When the nanoparticle based catalyst was recycled and reused for subsequent disinfection experiments, its efficiency did not change remarkably even after three cycles. The sonochemically synthesized [email protected]
core-shell nanoparticles have a good potential for application in solar photocatalytic disinfection of water borne pathogens.