Boosting Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production by Modulating Recombination Modes and Proton Adsorption Energy

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Yitao Dai, Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Centre (INANO), Synfuels China Co., Ltd.
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  • Qijing Bu, Jilin University
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  • Rishmali Sooriyagoda, West Virginia University
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  • Pedram Tavadze, West Virginia University
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  • Olivia Pavlic, West Virginia University
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  • Tingbin Lim, Synfuels China Co., Ltd.
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  • Yanbin Shen, Synfuels China Co., Ltd.
  • ,
  • Aref Mamakhel
  • Xiaoping Wang, Synfuels China Co., Ltd.
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  • Yongwang Li, Synfuels China Co., Ltd.
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  • Hans Niemantsverdriet, Synfuels China Co., Ltd., Syngaschem BV
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  • Bo B. Iversen
  • Flemming Besenbacher
  • Tengfeng Xie, Jilin University
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  • James P. Lewis, West Virginia University
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  • Alan D. Bristow, West Virginia University
  • ,
  • Nina Lock
  • Ren Su

Solar-driven production of renewable energy (e.g., H2) has been investigated for decades. To date, the applications are limited by low efficiency due to rapid charge recombination (both radiative and nonradiative modes) and slow reaction rates. Tremendous efforts have been focused on reducing the radiative recombination and enhancing the interfacial charge transfer by engineering the geometric and electronic structure of the photocatalysts. However, fine-tuning of nonradiative recombination processes and optimization of target reaction paths still lack effective control. Here we show that minimizing the nonradiative relaxation and the adsorption energy of photogenerated surface-adsorbed hydrogen atoms are essential to achieve a longer lifetime of the charge carriers and a faster reaction rate, respectively. Such control results in a 16-fold enhancement in photocatalytic H2 evolution and a 15-fold increase in photocurrent of the crystalline g-C3N4 compared to that of the amorphous g-C3N4.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Pages (from-to)5381-5386
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019

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