Highly Enhanced Photoelectrochemical Water Oxidation Efficiency Based on Triadic Quantum Dot/Layered Double Hydroxide/BiVO4 Photoanodes

Ye Yang, Yanqun Tang, Ruirui Wang, Dongpeng Yan, Xu Xiang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

228 Scopus Citations

Abstract

The water oxidation half-reaction is considered to be a bottleneck for achieving highly efficient solar-driven water splitting due to its multiproton-coupled four-electron process and sluggish kinetics. Herein, a triadic photoanode consisting of dual-sized CdTe quantum dots (QDs), Co-based layered double hydroxide (LDH) nanosheets, and BiVO4 particles, that is, QD@LDH@BiVO4, was designed. Two sets of consecutive Type-II band alignments were constructed to improve photogenerated electron-hole separation in the triadic structure. The efficient charge separation resulted in a 2-fold enhancement of the photocurrent of the QD@LDH@BiVO4 photoanode. A significantly enhanced oxidation efficiency reaching above 90% in the low bias region (i.e., E < 0.8 V vs RHE) could be critical in determining the overall performance of a complete photoelectrochemical cell. The faradaic efficiency for water oxidation was almost 90%. The conduction band energy of QDs is -1.0 V more negative than that of LDH, favorable for the electron injection to LDH and enabling a more efficient hole separation. The enhanced photon-to-current conversion efficiency and improved water oxidation efficiency of the triadic structure may result from the non-negligible contribution of hot electrons or holes generated in QDs. Such a band-matching and multidimensional triadic architecture could be a promising strategy for achieving high-efficiency photoanodes by sufficiently utilizing and maximizing the functionalities of QDs.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)19446-19455
Number of pages10
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Volume8
Issue number30
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5900-66932

Keywords

  • layered double hydroxides
  • photoanodes
  • photoelectrochemistry
  • quantum dots
  • water oxidation

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