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Removal of SO2 on a nanoporous photoelectrode with simultaneous H2 production

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Abstract

The oxidation process of SO32− to final SO42− is commonly required in existing desulphurization technologies. The resulting SO32− is usually purged with air for oxidation before disposal. The energy of SO32− to SO42− is wasted in this process. Herein, we report simultaneous H2 production with the removal of poisonous SO2 via a photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting process based on a nanoporous BiVO4 photoanode. The enhancement of H2 production is attributed to the lower activation energy and faster kinetics of SO32− oxidation compared with direct oxidation of water on the photoanode. The enhancement factor is significantly higher on the nanoporous film than on the non-porous film. The removal rate of SO2 is higher than 97%, and the absorbed SO2 is used to produce hydrogen. A H2 evolution rate of 29.8 μmol h−1 cm−2 on the nanoporous BiVO4, with a high Faradaic efficiency, is obtained with removal of SO2, which is much faster than that without SO2 removal (0.22 μmol h−1 cm−2). This work provides a new method for SO2 removal with simultaneous H2 production. The proposed method can be used either in processes involving NaOH as a desulfurization absorber, or combined with existing desulfurization technologies, such as the ammonia-based desulfurization method.

Graphical abstract: Removal of SO2 on a nanoporous photoelectrode with simultaneous H2 production

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Publication details

The article was received on 06 Dec 2016, accepted on 08 Mar 2017, published on 09 Mar 2017 and first published online on 09 Mar 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C6EN00638H
Citation: Environ. Sci.: Nano, 2017, Advance Article
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    Removal of SO2 on a nanoporous photoelectrode with simultaneous H2 production

    J. Han, X. Zheng, L. Zhang, H. Fu and J. Chen, Environ. Sci.: Nano, 2017, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C6EN00638H

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