The strategy for photocatalytic materials was published in Nature Communication

Assistant Professor Zhenhua Pan and Professor Kenji Katayama of the Department of Chemistry described a new strategy for the enhancement of the photocatalytic materials used for water splitting by sunlight, collaborating with Prof. Chiheng Chu at Zheijiang University. There has been a great demand for generating clean energy via artificial photosynthesis, and inorganic photocatalytic materials are promising materials to mimic the process. They focused on the charge separation process (separation of positive and negative mobile carriers) because the mobile charge carriers are the source for the generation of water-splitting reactions. They developed a new photocatalytic material with a core-shell structure (core/Ag/Pd) and their energy levels were tuned to have the highest efficiency for the smooth flow of charge carriers. This methodology was applied for one of the famous photocatalytic materials, bismuth vanadium (BiVO4) based photocatalyst and they performed the formation reaction of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) from water and oxygen using sunlight energy. They reached the world record reaction efficiency of 0.73 %. (The previous record was also reported by their collaboration. https://www.chuo-u.ac.jp/academics/faculties/science/departments/chemistry/news/2022/02/58542 (Japanese only)) This strategy was applicable for other photocatalytic materials, such as titanium oxide (TiO2) and carbon nitride (g-C3N4) and they showed the strategy was versatile for various photocatalytic materials.

This research was published online on Dec. 16, 2022, in Nature Communication (Springer Nature).

“A general interfacial-energetics-tuning strategy for enhanced artificial photosynthesis”
Springer Nature, Nature Communications, (2022)13:7783,