Assessment of Commercial Active Ceramic Tiles on Benzene Degradation for the Pollution Control of Indoor Atmospheric Buildings

  •  R. Crepaldi    
  •  G. Titato    
  •  F. Lanças    
  •  E. Sichieri    
  •  M. Telascrea    
  •  M. Chaves    


Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) constitutes an important class of air pollutants, and benzene is one of the main contaminants of indoor air pollution. Among the methods for the treatment of environments with a high VOCs concentration is the photocatalytic oxidation by TiO2 (anatase) ceramic coated surfaces. The effectiveness of VOCs photodegradation studies using active ceramic tiles made in laboratory is well reported in the literature. However, this has not been reported using commercial tiles, although active ceramics are sold for such a function. In this context, this study proposed the assessment of commercial active ceramic tiles capacity in the photocatalytic degradation of benzene in indoor air. The development of this work arose from two questions: a) if the commercial active ceramic tiles are efficient in the VOCs degradation as the manufacturers claim; b) if they are able to degrade VOCs in indoor building environments. Experiments were conducted in laboratory’s scale, using an adapted simulation chamber. The volatilized benzene entered in contact with the commercial ceramic tile under fluorescent light and ultraviolet (UV) light of 365 nm. Samples of the chamber internal air were collected by adsorption on polydimethylsiloxane fibres in headspace technique (SPME-HS). The evaluation of the benzene degradation occurred by gas chromatography analysis with mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The characterization of commercial active ceramic samples occurred by techniques of X-Ray Diffraction Powder (XRD), and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) with Energy Dispersive Spectrometry (EDS). Results showed that, under the experimental conditions, the commercial active ceramic tile was not capable of the benzene photocatalytic oxidation. The ceramic characterization detected very low quantity of TiO2 on ceramic samples, being this fact attributed as the main responsible for the ceramic photocatalytic inactiveness.

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