Solar to Fuels Conversion By a Monolithic and Standalone Photoelectrochemical Device

Monday, October 12, 2015: 16:00
104-B (Phoenix Convention Center)
H. S. Jeon (Korea Institute of Science and Technology), Y. J. Hwang (Korea Institute of Science and Technology), and B. K. Min (Korea Institute of Science and Technology, Green School, Korea University)
Solar to fuels conversion inspired from nature has attracted substantial attention due to a demand for developing sustainable future energy as well as chemical resources. In this presentation, I will introduce our strategy for a highly efficient solar energy to chemical conversion device using CO2 and water as feedstock. For the realization of this architecture we developed a thin film photovoltaic technology for the light absorbing component using a low cost, solution based Cu(InxGa1-x)(SySe1-y)2 (CIGS) fabrication method to provide high enough potential for the conversion reactions. Our solar-fuel device also adapted metal oxide nanoparticle deposited with a low temperature coating method as the water oxidation catalyst and nanostructured metal films as the CO2 reduction to CO or HCOOH generation catalyst. Remarkably, this is the first demonstration of a monolithic and standalone solar-fuel device whose solar-to-fuel conversion efficiency from CO2 and H2O is over 4%, which is comparable to that of photosynthesis in nature. The details of the synthetic method and characterization of each component and the solar-fuel generation system are discussed. Also, some prospects of solar-fuel research for achieving highly efficient solar-fuel production device will be suggested.