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Issue 19, 2016
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Catalysis of solar hydrogen production by iron atoms on the surface of Fe-doped silicon carbide

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Abstract

The activity of silicon carbide nanowires for light-driven hydrogen production is increased 100-fold by doping with Fe. The surface of the nanowires comprises Si, C, O (OH) and Fe atoms: importantly, selective removal of surface Fe by treatment with HF removes >99% of catalytic H2 evolution activity without altering the bulk electronic properties. Laboratory experiments with an aqueous suspension of nanoparticles at pH 6.4 reveal high stability and a quantum efficiency of 11.6% at 420 nm, when iodide is used as electron donor. The results show that Fe must be a component of surface catalytic sites that include neighbouring OH functionalities, and add further assurance that scalable artificial photosynthesis can be achieved using inexpensive and abundant resources.

Graphical abstract: Catalysis of solar hydrogen production by iron atoms on the surface of Fe-doped silicon carbide

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Publication details

The article was received on 08 Jul 2016, accepted on 03 Sep 2016 and first published on 14 Sep 2016


Article type: Communication
DOI: 10.1039/C6CY01465H
Citation: Catal. Sci. Technol., 2016,6, 7038-7041

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    Catalysis of solar hydrogen production by iron atoms on the surface of Fe-doped silicon carbide

    Z. Wang and F. A. Armstrong, Catal. Sci. Technol., 2016, 6, 7038
    DOI: 10.1039/C6CY01465H

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