Catalysts, Protection Layers, and Semiconductors: The Challenge of Interfacing

Sunday, October 11, 2015: 14:40
Regency C (Hyatt Regency)
I. Chorkendorff (Technical University of Denmark)
Hydrogen is the simplest solar fuel to produce and in this presentation we shall give a short overview of the pros and cons of various tandem devices [1,2]. The large band gap semiconductor needs to be in front, but apart from that we can chose to have either the anode in front or back using either acid or alkaline conditions.  Since most relevant semiconductors are very prone to corrosion the advantage of using buried junctions and using protection layers offering shall be discussed [3-5]. In particular we shall show how doped TiO2 is a very generic protection layer for both the anode and the cathode [6]. Next we shall discuss the availability of various catalysts for being coupled to these protections layers and how their stability and amount needed may be evaluated [7, 8, 9].  Examples of half-cell reaction using protection layers for both cathode and anode will be discussed though some of recent examples both under both alkaline and acidic conditions. Notably NiOx promoted by iron is a material that is transparent, providing protection, and is a good catalyst for O2 evolution [10]. Si is a very good low band gap semiconductor and the optimal thickness of this in a tandem device will be discussed [11]. We have also recently started searching for large band gap semiconductors like III-V based or pervoskite materials and follow the same strategy by using protection layers and catalysts [12].  Finally if time allows we shall also discuss the possibility of making high energy density fuels by hydrogenation of CO2 instead of hydrogen evolution [13].



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       [8]     E. A. Paoli, et al. Chemical Science, Chemical Science, 6 190 (2015)

       [9]     E. Kemppainen et al. In Preparation (2015)

    [10]     B. Mei, et al. J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 5 1948 (2014)

    [11]     B. Dowon et al. Energy & Environ. Sci. 8  650 (2015)

    [12]     M. Malizia, et al. J. Mater. Chem. A DOI: 10.1039/C4TA00752B (2014)

    [13]     A. Verdaguer-Casadevall et al. In Preparation (2015)