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Improved photoelectrochemical water splitting of CaNbO2N photoanodes by Co-Pi photodeposition and surface passivation

Fatima Haydous1*, Wenping Si1*, Vitaly Guzenko1, Friedrich Waag2, Ekaterina Pomjakushina1*, Mario El Kazzi1, Laurent Sévery3, Alexander Wokaun1*, Daniele Pergolesi1*, Thomas Lippert1*

1 Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI), 5232 Villigen, Switzerland

2 Center for Nanointegration Duisburg-Essen, Technical Chemistry I, University of Duisburg-Essen, 47057 Duisburg, Germany

3 Department of Chemistry, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland

* Corresponding authors emails: fatima.haydous@psi.ch, wenping.si@psi.ch, ekaterina.pomjakushina@psi.ch, alexander.wokaun@psi.ch, daniele.pergolesi@psi.ch, thomas.lippert@psi.ch
DOI10.24435/materialscloud:yz-bc [version v1]

Publication date: Nov 25, 2020

How to cite this record

Fatima Haydous, Wenping Si, Vitaly Guzenko, Friedrich Waag, Ekaterina Pomjakushina, Mario El Kazzi, Laurent Sévery, Alexander Wokaun, Daniele Pergolesi, Thomas Lippert, Improved photoelectrochemical water splitting of CaNbO2N photoanodes by Co-Pi photodeposition and surface passivation, Materials Cloud Archive 2020.150 (2020), doi: 10.24435/materialscloud:yz-bc.


Photoelectrochemical solar water splitting is a promising approach to convert solar energy into sustainable hydrogen fuel using semiconductor electrodes. Due to their visible light absorption properties, oxynitrides have shown to be attractive photocatalysts for this application. In this study, the influence of the preparation method of CaNbO2N particles on their morphological and optical properties, and thereby their photoelectrochemical performance, is investigated. The best performing CaNbO2N photoanode is produced by ammonolysis of Nb enriched calcium niobium oxide. The enhanced photoactivity arises from an enlarged surface area and superior visible light absorption properties. The photoactivity of this photoanode was further enhanced by photodeposition of Co-Pi co-catalyst and by atomic layer deposition of an Al2O3 overlayer. A photocurrent density of 70 mA at 1.23 V vs RHE was achieved. The observed enhancement of the photoelectrochemical performance after Co-Pi/Al2O3 deposition is the combined effect of the improved kinetics of oxygen evolution due to the Co-Pi co-catalyst and the reduced surface recombination of the photogenerated carriers at the Al2O3 surface layer.

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photoelectrochemical water splitting surface passivation computational screening MARVEL

Version history:

2020.150 (version v1) [This version] Nov 25, 2020 DOI10.24435/materialscloud:yz-bc